Russia detains prison official taped beating women
Russia on Thursday arrested a deputy prison governor after scandalous YouTube videos apparently showed him brutally beating women inmates, reacting with unusual speed to the whistleblowing tapes.
Investigators detained the deputy governor of a women's prison colony in the far Eastern Amur region, Sergei Zychkov, on suspicion of exceeding his powers with violence, the Investigative Committee said in a statement on its website.
Zychkov was named as the offender in three videos that were posted on YouTube on Monday, showing a man in uniform walking up to women in a cell and lashing out at them with his fists and boots and pulling their hair.
"The investigation believes that Zychkov is shown in the video footage posted on the Internet, where a prison official beats women inmates," the Investigative Committee said.
Investigators had announced Wednesday they would probe the circumstances behind the shocking footage, aired on national television.
The videos show footage playing on closed-circuit television screens, suggesting they were filmed by a security guard.
Whistle-blowers leaking videos to YouTube have turned into a powerful force in Russia, with authorities forced to react by evidence that spreads uncontrollably through social media.
The videos can be seen at: http://www.youtube.com/user/MrArtur113#p/a/u/2/5SJ7fUARzhU
© 2011 AFP