Bloomberg News

Bolshoi Artistic Director to Identify Acid Attacker

February 04, 2013

The Bolshoi Theater’s artistic director, Sergei Filin, said he’ll identify who was behind an acid attack last month that threatens his eyesight, once an investigation is complete.

“I’m absolutely certain I know who did this,” Filin told the British Broadcasting Corp. in a phone interview posted yesterday on their website. “But I will only speak about this when investigators are ready to announce this.”

Filin was discharged from the hospital today, RIA Novosti reported. The former star dancer at the Bolshoi ballet company was attacked with acid outside his home in the Russian capital on Jan. 17. His face and eyes were damaged during the assault, which he says was linked to his work.

Filin hopes to recover sufficiently to see his children, he told the BBC. He has undergone multiple operations on his eyes and plans to pursue treatment in Germany. His right eye suffered more than the left.

Moscow police will identify the suspects publicly only after detaining and charging them, according to spokesman Andrei Galiakberov.

“This is a case that’s generated huge public interest in Russia and internationally given that it involves the Bolshoi Theater and we’ll devote every effort to uncovering the culprits,” he said today in an interview in Moscow.

Filin said that prior to the assault, someone tampered with his mobile phones and hacked his e-mail and Facebook Inc. account. He blamed the “psychosis” of one or more people who wanted to cause him pain as well as remove him from the Bolshoi for a long time because they opposed his management, according to the BBC interview.

The police said last week they’ll use a lie detector when questioning witnesses as they investigate the crime. Investigators have spoken with the Bolshoi ballet’s principal dancer, Nikolai Tsiskaridze, as well as other employees of the theater and Filin’s relatives and acquaintances.

To contact the reporters on this story: Henry Meyer in Moscow at hmeyer4@bloomberg.net; Stepan Kravchenko in Moscow at skravchenko@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Balazs Penz at bpenz@bloomberg.net


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