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Former SWAT officer turned MMA fighter found guilty of killing policeman in Russia

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Serik Battalov, a former MMA fighter and SWAT officer, was found guilty of murder in Omsk, Russia. 

A former SWAT officer and MMA fighter in Omsk, Russia was found guilty for the murder of a fellow police officer.

Serik Battalov, who served five years as part of the Otryad Mobilny Osobogo Naznacheniya (OMON) Special Purpose Mobility Unit, was handed a 22-year sentence on December 13 for murder and armed robbery. His case was heard before a jury two weeks earlier, which led to a unanimous guilty.

According to reports, Battalov kidnapped and killed former policeman Alexander Ratkevich on March 17, 2017 with the help of his accomplice, private security company employee Vasily Elantsev. The aim was to dispose of the body in order to take possession of the victim’s Lexus GX460 SUV, which had been put up for sale.

Battalov and Elantsev met with Ratkevich ahead of the incident and pretended to be interested in test driving the vehicle. Once inside the vehicle, they attacked the former policeman, kidnapped his unconscious body, and drove off to their hideout. They then strangled the victim with a tow rope and drove to the forest in the Novosibirsk region to dispose of the body. They burned the victim’s body, robbed him of his belonging, and stole the car in an attempt to sell it to their friends.

The crime was solved within a matter of days. A female witness passing by at the time noticed the owner of the Lexus being beaten up by assailants. She recalled the license plate and informed the security on duty in the plaza where the car was parked, who in turn informed the police. By March 20, the police had located the vehicle and arrested the person driving the car, who was friends with the assailants.

While Battalov was arrested quickly thereafter, his accomplice was found dead inside his car. Much like his victim, he was strangled. The police initially considered the possibility of murder, though ruled it out when the forensics examination verified that he had committed suicide.

Battalov was a successful martial artist who held a Master of Sports in military hand-to-hand combat, boxing, and kickboxing. The criminal holds wins in various Russian boxing and MMA tournaments. He is also a supervisory board member of the Shemetov Brothers’ Foundation for Support and Development of Combat Sports and Martial Arts. Moreover,

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