Oligarchs Deaths

Vladimir Nesterov, Russia’s Space Chief Dead [ 28 December 2022]

Russia's Former Top Space Engineer Vladimir Nesterov 'Dies Mysteriously' After House Arrest

Vladimir Yevgenyevich Nesterov, a Russian engineer, died on December 28, 2022. He was 74 years old. Vladimir Nesterov was the former general director of the Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center, one of the world’s leading space launch providers. Russian officials have not revealed the cause of Nesterov’s death.

Life and Education: Foundation of Vladimir Nesterov’s Journey

Vladimir Nesterov was a Russian engineer who served as the general director of Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center, one of the world’s leading space launch providers. He was born in Cherepovets, Vologda Oblast,Russia, on July 1, 1949, and graduated from the Moscow Aviation Institute in 1972 with a Master’s degree in mechanical engineering. He then served in the Soviet Army until 1992, after which he joined the Russian Space Agency.

Nesterov’s early career with the Russian Space Agency was focused on launch vehicles and ground infrastructure. Vladimir Nesterov served as a deputy head of the Directorate for launch vehicles and ground infrastructure from 2004 to 2005, and then as the head of the same directorate from 2005 to 2008. In 2008, he was appointed general director of Khrunichev.

As head of Khrunichev, Vladimir Nesterov oversaw the development and production of a number of important Russian space vehicles, including the Angara rocket and the Proton-M rocket. The Angara rocket is a new-generation rocket that is designed to replace the Proton-M rocket and to provide Russia with a more reliable and affordable launch capability. The Proton-M rocket is a workhorse of the Russian space program, and has been used to launch a wide range of satellites and spacecraft, including the International Space Station.

Nesterov resigned as head of the rocket maker in August 2012 after two satellites exploded in a botched launch of Russia’s Proton-M rocket, but he continued working on the development of Angara in his capacity as chief engineer.

Nesterov was also a strong advocate for international cooperation in space exploration. He played a key role in developing the joint Russian-American Atlas V rocket, which has been used to launch a number of important NASA missions, including the Mars Curiosity rover. He also worked to promote cooperation between Russia and Europe on space projects.

Vladimir Nesterov retired as general director of Khrunichev in 2012, but he remained active in the Russian space industry. He served as a consultant to Khrunichev and to the Russian Space Agency. He also served on the board of directors of a number of Russian space companies.

Allegations of Fraud of $72 Million Against Vladimir Nesterov

After the successful launch of the Angara rocket in 2014, Vladimir Nesterov left his position as head of the Khrunichev Center amid allegations of fraud and embezzlement. In November 2020, he was criminally charged with misappropriating more than $72 million from the state. Investigators allege that in 2006, Nesterov allowed an American firm called Space Transport Inc. to sell its shares in Russia at a low price, which his agency then purchased at a higher price.

Russian authorities accused him of stealing over $68 million, leading to his house arrest in 2014 as the investigation into his alleged illegal activities.

The case was still ongoing at the time of Vladimir Nesterov’s death.

Vladimir Nesterov
Vladimir Nesterov

Russian Oligarchs Mysterious Deaths in 2022

Leonid Shulman

Leonid Shulman , a top executive for the Russian state-owned energy company Gazprom, was found dead of a reported suicide in a cottage in the village of Leninsky on Jan. 30 , 2022

Igor Nosov

The CEO of the Corporation for the Development of the Far East and the Arctic, Igor Nosov, died on 8 Feb 2022.

Alexander Tyulakov 

Alexander Tyulakov , another top executive for Gazprom, was found dead on 25 February 2022 in a garage.

Mikhail Watford 

Ukraine-born oligarch Mikhail Watford was found dead on 28 February 2022 , three days after Tyulakov at his home in England.

Vasily Melnikov

On March 24 ,2022, Russian media reported that billionaire Vasily Melnikov, who owned the medical supply company MedStom , his wife, and their two sons were found dead in their luxury apartment in Nizhny Novgorod. They had all been stabbed, and the murder weapons Knifes were found at the scene.

Vladislav Avayev 

Vladislav Avayev, the former vice president of Gazprombank, one of the largest banks in Russia, which has ties to the energy industry, was found dead in his apartment in Moscow along with his wife and daughter on April 18. 

Sergey Protosenya 

Sergei Protosenya, a former deputy chairman of Novatek, a Russian natural gas firm, was found hanged while his wife and daughter were found stabbed to death at a villa in Spain on 19 April 2022.

Andrei Krukovsky

Andrei Krukovsky, the director of the Gazprom-owned Krasnaya Polyana ski resort, mysteriously fell off a cliff while hiking and died in May 2022.

Alexander Subbotin 

Former top Lukoil executive Alexander Subbotin was found dead in 8 May 2022 in the basement of a house near Moscow.

Yuri Voronov

Yuri Voronov, a 61-year-old Russian business executive having ties with Gazprom was found dead in his swimming pool with a gunshot wound to the head in Leningrad region at around 2 p.m on 4 July 2022.

Dan Rapoport

Dan Rapoport, a Latvia-born American businessman was found dead in front of a luxury apartment building by the D.C. Metro Police Department on 14 August 2022 .

Ravil Maganov

The chairman of the board of Russia’s largest private oil company LUKoil Ravil Maganov, 67, died on 1 Sept 2022 after falling from from the sixth-floor window of the Moscow ‘s Central Clinical Hospital. The hospital is also known as the Kremlin Clinic for its treatment of patients from Russia’s political and business elite. Ravil was reportedly hospitalized for heart problems and depression.

Ivan Pechorin

Ivan Pechorin ,managing director of the Far East and Arctic Development Corporation,  died on Sept 10 ,2022 , after he fell from his boat in the waters off Russky Island near Cape Ignatiev in the Sea of Japan.

Vladimir Sungorkin

Komsomolskaya Pravda editor-in-chief Vladimir Sungorkin, a prominent figure in the Russian media landscape, has died in mysterious circumstances on a business trip on 14 Sept 2022. 

Anatoly Gerashchenko

Russian aviation expert Anatoly Gerashchenko, who worked as the head of the Moscow Aviation Institute (MAI), has died after falling down the stairs. Gerashchenko is said to have slipped and tumbled down the stairs to his death.

Pavel Pchelnikov

Pavel Pchelnikov [ Павел Пчельников ] , the head of communications at Russian Railways subsidiary Digital Logistics, wasfound dead on his balcony by gunshot wound in the green Kolomenskaya Embankment neighbourhood of Moscow on Wednesday morning 28 September 2022. 

Nikolai Petrunin

State Duma deputy from the Tula region Nikolai Petrunin died on 12 October 2022 . He had been in a coma for a month with complications linked to severe Covid

Nikolai Mushegian

Nikolai Mushegian , MakerDAO Co-Founder was found dead in the water off a Puerto Beach on 28 October 2022, hours after he tweeted that the CIA and Mossad would “torture me to death.”

Vyacheslav Taran

Russian Cryptocurrency billionaire Vyacheslav Taran, 53, founder of Forex Club and president of the Libertex Group died in a helicopter crash near the French-Italian border on 25 November 2022.

Vladimir Makei

Foreign Minister of Belarus Vladimir Makei died On 26 Nov 2022 according to the press secretary of the Belarusian Foreign Ministry Anatoly Glaz.

Grigory Kochenov

Grigory Kochenov, the 41-year-old creative director of AGIMA, a large Russian IT company, fell to his death from his 6th floor balcony in Nizhny Novgorod .while police officers were conducting a search of his apartment on 7 December 2022.

Dmitry Zelenov

Dmitry Zelenov , a 50 year old Russian Oligarch and Property Mogul died after allegedly falling down a flight of stairs during a visit with friends in the town of Antibes in the French Riviera on 9 December 2022.

Vladimir Bidenov

Vladimir Bidenov was found lying unconscious in his room on the first floor with a few empty wine bottles around him in Raygada district, Odisha (India) . The doctors declared him dead after he was rushed to the district hospital.

Pavel Antov

A Russian MP named Pavel Antov was found dead in a hotel room in India on December 25, 2023. Antov was traveling in India with a group of friends. 

Alexander Buzakov

General Director of Admiralty Shipyards JSC suddenly died on 24 Dec 2022 at the age of 66. Alexander Buzakov has headed Admiralty Shipyards since August 2011.

Alexei Maslov

Alexei Maslov, a retired Russian general who served as Commander-in-Chief of the Ground Forces from 2004 to 2008 and Russia’s chief military representative to NATO, died unexpectedly in Moscow on 24 December 2022 at the age of 69.

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