During the occupation of the village of Novopetrivka in Mykolaiv Oblast, a 34-year-old Russian man, Dzhabrail Yusupov, was looking for locals who helped the Ukrainian army, kidnapping and beating them. Ukrainian law enforcement officers served him with a notice of suspicion, and Slidstvo.Info journalists found the occupier’s social media and identified his commander.

On 7 November 2023, the Security Service of Ukraine served a notice of suspicion of violation of the laws and customs of war to Russian citizen Dzhabrail Yusupov. He serves in the 205th Separate Motorised Rifle Cossack Brigade of the Russian Armed Forces. Some of the soldiers from this brigade were stationed in the occupied village of Novopetrivka, Bashtanka district, Mykolaiv Oblast, from 18 March to 10 November 2022.

The occupiers raided the homes of Ukrainians, intimidated locals and threatened them with physical violence in order to obtain useful information for their troops.

Dzhabrail Yusupov, call sign Gabriel, together with other occupiers, developed a plan to find and punish residents of Novopetrivka who, according to the Russian military, helped the Ukrainian army. 

The suspicion refers to several men who suffered from the Russian military. The occupiers took one Ukrainian to a field and kept him in a pit for several hours. Another was taken to a neighbouring farm and placed in a railway wagon, where he spent the night in the cold, in unsanitary conditions and without food. Another man was tortured by the Russians, executed by a shot to the head, and his body was taken to the outskirts of the village.

34-year-old Dzhabrail Yusupov lives in the city of Kizilyurt (Dagestan), which is more than 1600 km from the Mykolaiv region. 

From Yusupov’s social media, it seems that he is an ordinary Russian who adores Putin, has a rest and takes pictures with friends. 

In one of the stories of Russian propagandists, Yusupov says that he controls a reconnaissance drone, adjusts artillery fire and identifies Ukrainian positions. Most of all, the occupier wants to return home. In order for this to happen as soon as possible, he believes that we should try to «break the back of this Nazi bastard», that is, Ukrainians. The occupier was even awarded the Zhukov Medal for his actions in the war against Ukraine.

Slidstvo.Info journalists managed to identify Yusupov’s commander, Lieutenant Vladimir Oleshnikov, with the call sign «Saratov». 

Oleshnikov admitted in a story for the Russian media that he took part in the occupation of the town of Snihurivka in Mykolaiv Oblast. Nearby is the village of Novopetrivka, where Yusupov and his «colleagues» abused people.

«Saratov» also received an award for his «exploits», but not a medal, but the entire «Order of Courage». The Russian commander was awarded the order in occupied Nova Kakhovka.

It is currently unknown where the Russian occupier Dzhabrail Yusupov and his commander are. Yusupov faces up to 15 years in prison for his crimes (Article 438(1) of the Criminal Code of Ukraine).

The material has been prepared with the support of the European Union and the International Renaissance Foundation within the framework of the joint initiative “European Renaissance of Ukraine”. The material represents the position of the authors and does not necessarily reflect the position of the European Union or the International Renaissance Foundation.