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Judge Orders Officials To Turn Over Autopsy Records of Mikhail Lesin, the former Russian press minister who was found dead in a D.C. hotel room under suspicious circumstances

[Link](https://www.rferl.org/a/judge-lesin-autopsy-lawsuit/29768604.html?fbclid=IwAR2HCsCXCZBkOU3ovDJvt6pOCLGO8vYwyN3IJCkI3cWAg9kdoAV7rUSSq-A)

> A Washington judge has ordered the city medical examiner to turn over dozens of autopsy records and other files in the investigation of Mikhail Lesin, the former Russian press minister who was found dead in a D.C. hotel room under suspicious circumstances more than three years ago.
>
> The February 13 ruling came in response to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit by RFE/RL, which has sought the files as part of its ongoing probe into Lesin’s November 2015 death.

You may remember that Christopher Steele “provided a secret report to the FBI asserting that RT founder Mikhail Lesin was bludgeoned to death by thugs hired by an oligarch close to Putin. Three other sources independently told the FBI the same basic story, contradicting the government’s finding that Lesin’s death was accidental.” [Link](https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/jasonleopold/christopher-steele-mikhail-lesin-murder-putin-fbi#.nsE6MXmQD)

> Lesin’s corpse was found in a Washington, DC, hotel room on the morning of Nov. 5, 2015. The coroner determined that he had died from blunt force injuries to the head and had also sustained blunt force injuries to his neck, torso, upper extremities, and lower extremities. After an 11-month investigation, a federal prosecutor announced in late 2016 that *Lesin died alone in his room due to a series of drunken falls “after days of excessive consumption of alcohol.”* His death was ruled an “accident,” with the coroner adding acute alcohol intoxication as a contributing cause of death, and prosecutors closed the case.

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Other Russian officials who have died in the US. [See here](https://www.cnn.com/2017/03/24/europe/dead-russians/index.html) and [here](https://www.usatoday.com/pages/interactives/suspicious-russian-deaths-sacrificial-pawns-or-coincidence/) for cases outside the US, too.

* On election day 2016, Sergei Krivov, 63, was [found unresponsive](https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/alimwatkins/the-strange-case-of-the-russian-diplomat-who-got-his-head-sm) inside the Russian consulate hours after the polls had opened. He was declared dead on scene. First the Russian consular officials said he fell off the roof; then said he died of a heart attack. The first police report stated Krivov had head trauma. But after the autopsy, the New York City Medical Examiner decided he died from a tumor in his chest.

* Feb 2017: Vitaly Churkin, Russian Ambassador to the UN, [died suddenly](https://www.cnn.com/2017/03/10/world/russian-ambassador-heart-attack/) “in his office fulfilling his duties” in NYC. He was ruled to have had a heart attack. Not suspicious itself, but when combined with the dozens of Russian officials who died suddenly (and sometimes very suspiciously) across the world in 2016-2017, it becomes questionable.

* Alex Oronov [died of](https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/jasonaleopold/a-suspicious-death-in-trumps-orbit-total-bullshit-says-famil) unknown causes in March 2017. Oronov was a Ukrainian émigré businessman in New York who organized a meeting between Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen, Felix Sater, and Ukrainian member of parliament Andriy Artemenko in January 2017 about a peace plan for Ukraine that would have benefited Russia. Note, also, he is related by marriage to Michael Cohen’s family. He is father-in-law to Michael’s brother, Bryan Cohen. Cohen says his death is not suspicious and he simply lost a long fight against illness.

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