A Russian oligarch with links to Vladimir Putin’s energy giant Gazprom has been found shot dead in his St. Petersburg mansion, according to reports.
Multi-millionaire businessman Yuri Voronov, 61, is the latest Russian elite linked to Gazprom to die in recent months.
Voronov’s logistics company held lucrative contracts with Gazprom in the Arctic.
He was found dead at his lavish home in an ultra-wealthy suburb around 2 pm Monday.
Voronov was found floating in his swimming pool with a gunshot wound to the head.
A Grand Power pistol was reportedly found nearby with several spent cases at the bottom of the pool.
He is at least the sixth wealthy Russian businessman to die in mysterious circumstances since the start of the year.
Many of the dead oligarchs have links to Gazprom and two of them also died in the same St. Petersburg suburb as Voronov.
The Russian Investigative Committee is probing Voronov’s death, which it currently attributes to a “dispute with business partners.”
His wife has reportedly told investigators that Voronov believed he was being swindled out of “a lot of money” by “dishonorable” contractors and partners.
According to The Daily Mail, a number of deaths at other mansions near St. Petersburg have led to rumors of murders being staged to look like suicides.
Alexander Tyulakov, 61, a senior Gazprom financial and security official, was found hanged at his home in the exclusive Leninsky development by a lover in February.
Investigators said he had killed himself, but local reports said his body showed signs of a beating – suggesting the hanging was staged.
Three weeks earlier, in the same housing development, 60-year-old Leonid Shulman was found stabbed to death in his bathroom.
Shulman was the head of transport at Gazprom Invest, a branch of the energy giant that handles its investment projects.
Billionaire Alexander Subbotin, 43, a former senior executive at energy giant Lukoil, was also found dead in May after “taking advice from shamans.”
One theory is that he was poisoned by toad venom that triggered a heart attack.
In April, wealthy Vladislav Avayev, 51, a former Kremlin official, appeared to have taken his own life after killing his wife Yelena, 47, and daughter, 13.
He had high-level links to the leading Russian financial institution Gazprombank.
Friends have disputed reports that he was jealous after his wife admitted she was pregnant by their driver.
There are claims he had access to the financial secrets of the Kremlin elite.
Several days later multimillionaire Sergey Protosenya, 55, was found hanged in Spain, after evidently killing with an ax his wife Natalia, 53, and their teenage daughter, Maria.
He was a former deputy chairman of Novatek, a company also closely linked to the Kremlin.
As with Avayev, it is suggested this may have been an assassination made to appear a murder-and-suicide.
Last week a mobile phone multi-millionaire and his wife were found stabbed to death in another case that has raised questions.
Naked Yevgeny Palant, 47, and his wife Olga, 50, both Ukrainian-born, were found with multiple knife wounds by their daughter Polina, 20.
Immediate briefing to the media claimed the woman took her own life in a jealous rage after Palant said he was leaving her.
Yet this was strongly disputed by the couple’s best friend.