Several MMA fighters — some of whom are employed as security guards by oligarch Ziyavudin Magomedov’s Summa Group holdings company — have been arrested on charges of attempted murder.
As reported by Russian outlet MK.ru, the detained fighters are suspected of attempting to murder Shamil Kuramagomedov, a bronze medalist in the 2017 Russian Combat Sambo Championship. According to the report, eight suspects attacked Kuramagomedov in June 2017 and beat him within an inch of his life. The fighter was hospitalized with a concussion, a traumatic brain injury, and a broken nose but opted not to report his assault to the police.
Despite travelling back to his native Dagestan, Kuramagomedov continued to be targeted by the assailants. Aware of the risk on his life, Kuramagomedov decided to come forward to the police. An investigation was opened in November 2017 and the suspects were detained 10 months later in September 2018.
According to the report, Kuramagomedov and the suspects all trained at the same gym, which was also owned by Summa Group. One of the defendants in the case is Felix Urujev, a “sports coach and judge” who was charged with the “intentional infliction of grievous bodily harm.”
While the aforementioned gym was not named, it could potentially be a reference to the Eagles MMA fight club, which Ziyavudin Magomedov founded in 2016. The club is home to several notable Dagestani fighters, including UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, who has also served as the club’s president since its inception. It should also be noted that another Eagles MMA fighter, Sergey Pavlovich, named defendant Felix Urujev as one of his coaches in a 2016 interview.
It should be noted that all the suspects detained have denied their involvement in the crime.
This marks the latest criminal investigation linked to Magomedov. The oligarch, whose wealth is estimated at $1.2 billion, was arrested in March 2018 on charges of embezzlement and the “organization of a criminal community” within Russia. Magomedov was denied bail and is currently in pre-trial detention. He faces a potential 20-year sentence if convicted.
Magomedov was also known as an MMA enthusiast. He owned a controlling share in Russian MMA promotion Fight Nights Global and financially supported several fighters, including UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov. He gifted the champion a luxury vehicle in the past, funded his training camps, and even reportedly paid for Nurmagomedov’s back surgery in 2017. Nurmagomedov has since come to Magomedov’s defence and even used his UFC 223 post-fight interview to beg Russian president Vladimir Putin to release the oligarch.