The Russian Interior Ministry has officially confirmed that no ransom was paid to release Sergei Kukura, First Vice-president of the LUKoil company. This information was revealed by Alexander Ovchinnikov, the Head of the Russian Interior Ministry's Main Directorate for the fight against organised crime.
In his words, the criminals understood that "the law-enforcement agencies were able to track them down", and that they could not get away with the money they asked for a ransom.
Ovchinnikov confirmed that the kidnappers demanded that they be paid three million euro and three million dollars. If they had been paid the money in one-dollar notes and one-euro notes, then the total weight of the money would have exceeded 3,600 tons, the head of the directorate noted.
He also said that after the vice-president was kidnapped, the Interior Ministry formed an operative staff. A wide range of operative-research and investigative actions conducted together with the Moscow Region prosecutor's office and the LUKoil security service resulted in releasing Kukura without paying any ransom, Ovchinnikov noted.
At the same time Ovchinnikov denied to disclose the details "of the special operation to release Sergei Kukura."