A top Russian scientist who worked on developing the world’s first registered combination vector vaccine against COVID-19 was found strangled to death with a belt in his apartment in northwest Moscow.
Andrey Botikov was one of the 18 scientists who first developed the Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine in 2020.
Botikov previously survived the encounter after an intruder broke into his apartment and began rowing with him over money.
A 29-year-old man has since been arrested by police and charged with the murder of Botikov.
The Committee reported that the defendant had already been prosecuted for committing another ‘serious’ crime.
“The location of the attacker was established in short order. During the interrogation, he pled guilty and was charged,” the Investigative Committee said.
“The defendant has a previous criminal record, as he stood trial on charges of committing a serious crime. In the near future, the investigation plans to petition the court to place the defendant in custody pending trial,” the Committee added.
“The body of the 48-year-old man was found… with strangulation marks, several stab wounds and abrasions were found on his body,” Mash reported.
Botikov, 47, worked as a senior researcher at the Gamaleya National Research Center for Ecology and Mathematics.
The Russian scientist was also honoured with he Order of Merit for the Fatherland award for his work on the COVID vaccine in 2021 by Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The Sputnik V was the first registered combination vector vaccine against Covid-19.
But critics suggested the vaccine was approved without proper research into its safety and efficacy.
However, according to a 2021 article in The Lancet, the vaccine ‘appeared safe and effective.’
READ MORE: Fauci Snaps: “We Don’t Even Use the Word Gain-of-Function, It’s So Nebulous”