Police Arrest Man Suspected of Being Accessory in Rishon Letzion Double Murder

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The scene of the police shooting in Lod, May 26. 2016.
The scene of the police shooting in Lod, May 26. 2016.Credit: Moti Milrod

Police arrested a man for helping the suspect in the double murder of a Rishon Letzion couple last week. The suspect, Yan Gabrielov, was killed by police on Saturday in Lod following a high speed car chase.

Anastasia Rusanov and her boyfriend Eliezer Kandinrov were found dead last Wednesday at Rusanov's apartment in Rishon Letzion, south of Tel Aviv. She had previously complained to the police that Gabrielov had been following her and had threatened her.

Police believe that the suspected accomplice, Igor Rivkin, helped hide Gabrielov after he murdered his ex-girlfriend and her boyfriend. On Sunday Rivkin was summoned to the Rishon Letzion Magistrate's court, where his detention order was extended.

The police initially believed Rivkin had also helped Gabrielov plan the murder of the couple; however, following their preliminary investigation, charges for assisting in the murder itself were dropped. Rivkin was charged as an accessory after the fact.

The scene of the police shooting in Lod, May 28, 2016. The victims (inset, L) and the murder suspect (inset, R).Credit: Moti Milrod, Courtesy

Rivkin told the police that at first he did not know what Gabrielov had done but when he learned that Gabrielov was a murder suspect he distanced himself, asking Gabrielov to stay away.

The police used technological means to confirm that the two men met in Be'er Sheva, where Gabrielov had fled after the murder. Despite being able to confirm this, police remain unclear as to the exact activity of the pair at this point. The police do not yet know whether Rivkin helped Gabrielov obstruct the investigation.

Judge Amit Michles ruled that Rivkin should remain in custody. The judge said that although the suspect presented limited danger since police had dropped the charge of accomplice to murder, he voiced concerns over his potential involvement in obstructing the investigation should he be released.

Judge Michles noted the fact that Rivkin had spent three years in prison and has three prior convictions for robbery, running a brothel, trafficking and prostitution.

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