A human rights activist and vocal critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin says he narrowly escaped an attempt on his life when he noticed a red dot from an assassin’s laser gunsight traveling across the wall of his home in a luxury seaside French resort town.
Vladimir Osechkin, the founder of Gulagu.net — an organization that exposed purported evidence of widespread torture and rape in Russian prisons last year — told independent journalist Yulia Latynina that his brush with death took place last week in the city of Biarritz.
Osechkin, 41, who has lived in self-imposed exile in France since 2015 with his wife and children, was placed on Russia’s wanted list in November 2021 in connection with an unspecified crime, Newsweek reported.
Most recently, Osechkin has been documenting Russia’s alleged efforts led by the infamous paramilitary organization Wagner group to recruit inmates to fight in Ukraine.
Speaking to Latynina via videoconference on Tuesday, Osechkin revealed that he had been warned that his life was in danger by Christo Grozev, with the Netherlands-based investigative journalism group Bellingcat.