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Published:January 17th, 2013 08:08 EST
Russian Mafia Boss Grandpa Khasan Assassinated in Moscow! Changing of the Guards?

Russian Mafia Boss Grandpa Khasan Assassinated in Moscow! Changing of the Guards?

By John G. Kays

Who`s behind the assassination of Russia`s biggest mafia boss, Aslan Usoyan, otherwise known as Grandpa Khasan? It happened just yesterday (1/16/2013) in Moscow near the Kremlin, as Khasan was leaving the Karetny Dvor restaurant, the Russian Godfather sustained a single fatal shot in his face from a sniper`s rifle.

It`s likely the sniper was positioned in an apartment building across from the Karetny Dvor; six 9mm shell casings were retrieved on a stairwell between the fifth and sixth floors of this building.

With Usoyan`s death comes a great amount of fear over turf wars, as it looks as if someone is trying to take over Khasan`s vast empire, including lucrative construction contracts for the upcoming Olympic Games, which will be hosted in Russia in 2014.

A Russian lawmaker Alexander Khinshtein (as reported by Sky News) has intelligence as to the ramifications of the Khasan hit, and tweeted yesterday: "I am sure that a new criminal redistribution will begin now."  The nature of this ensuing struggle (within the underworld) is yet to be determined.

Security forces have identified the weapon employed by the killer as a Val assault rifle fitted with a silencer, apparently, so as to not draw attention to the sniper as he did his deadly work. This type of weapon is preferred by Russian special forces, and therefore is the mark of a professional. 

 But who was this contractor working for? Usoyan has been in conflict since 2006 with Tariel Oniani, who heads up a Georgian criminal group (as reported by USA Today, who got it from an AP report).

Grandpa Khasan`s complete story dates back to the days of the Soviet Union and follows the complex developments of change when the Soviet Union broke up in the late 1980s. I certainly don`t have a grip on how Usoyan was able to gain the top position as Mafia Kingpin after years of struggle.

I don`t speak or read Russian, so I`m limited in what sources I can look at on the internet. Yet it sounds as if this Alexander Khinstein knows how this came about. Those of us in the West will await an authoritative narrative.

In the meantime, I did find one site called Russian Mafia which I`ll link for you. I`m reading it and you should too, but perhaps we should take it with a grain of salt, until we can cross-check it with other sources. I will say this, in the old days when Joseph Stalin was in control, the KGB controlled Organized Crime.

So when the Soviet Union dissolved, apparently, many seasoned KGB agents aligned themselves with crime bosses. The extent to which one of these bosses could sow up the top security people, is also the extent to which they could harness power (by linking to ex-KGB agents) with a rapidly changing Russian economic landscape.

Here`s where the corruption factor raises its homely head; this in a nutshell is what Aslan Usoyan was able to do. I can`t be more specific, because I don`t know exactly how he got all the power he did; I suspect very few do. What type of illegal activity was Grandpa Khasan involved in? 

Probably gambling, arms, drug trafficking, theft of natural resources, and I`m hearing construction contract monopolies (I believe you call it extortion or racketeering). This information comes from a Russian tabloid, Komsomolskaya Pravda

We must begin to search for the reasons for yesterday`s dramatic changing of the guards. In doing so, we have to thoroughly retrace modern Russian history.