NewsRussia's controversial heroes: Criminals turned patriots post-Ukraine conflict

Russia's controversial heroes: Criminals turned patriots post-Ukraine conflict

The murderer and pedophile went to the front. Putin made a hero out of him.
The murderer and pedophile went to the front. Putin made a hero out of him.
Images source: © Zuma Press | Mikhail Metzel

5:47 AM EST, March 8, 2024

The list of criminals that Russia dispatches to the Ukrainian front - murderers, rapists, pedophiles, and even cannibals - continues to grow. Those who survive the conflict are welcomed back as "heroes," regaining their freedom.

Nikita Siemianow is a prime example of this. As reported by "Fakt," he was sentenced in 2021 to nine years in a penal colony for the murder of his father-in-law. However, a few months later, he was freed. Pardoned by Putin, Siemianow was deployed to the Ukraine front. Now, he visits Russian schools promoting patriotism among students.

Siemianow's release and subsequent actions have appalled those who know him well, including Polina, his ex-wife. When they met, she was a mere 10 years old to his 18.

"He was employed at Polina's school. They became sexually involved when she was 13 and started cohabiting at 15. She was still a minor. By 17, they had a daughter together. Throughout their relationship, he subjected her to regular beatings, humiliation, and rapes, sometimes in front of strangers and minors," a friend of Polina told

According to Polina's friends, she endured years of domestic abuse, too frightened to seek help, even after suffering a broken nose at Nikita's hands.

Another friend recounted witnessing a disturbing incident at Nikita's home.

"At the age of 13, a friend and I were brought to Nikita's place. He first plied us with alcohol, then undressed Polina, forced her into sex, and attempted to molest my friend and me, saying, 'I think you can't join.' Thankfully, I refused," she recounted to

She pointed out that minors frequently visited Nikita's home. "What kind of hero does that make him? A pedophile and a murderer!" she exclaimed, vowing to testify if Polina pursued legal action.

His crime: the murder of his father-in-law

Following her divorce from Nikita at 18, Polina's ordeal didn't end. He exploited the situation to blackmail her.

"He constantly threatened her, saying she would never see her daughter again and that he would 'ruin her life' if she attempted to. Despite an initial agreement for shared access to their daughter, he reneged, barring Polina from seeing her after the divorce and frequently threatening her," a friend shared.

Only Polina's father could see his granddaughter, and that arrangement ended tragically.

While working together, Siemianow brutally murdered his father-in-law in April 2021, leading to a nine-year maximum-security prison sentence in May 2022. Despite this, he was released to fight in Ukraine a year later.

Shockingly, Siemianow returned to Novosibirsk as a "Russian hero." Polina discovered he was participating in school meetings, promoting love of the motherland and bravery to children. He's even photographed with students.

"It's appalling. The authorities not only release criminals but also grant them direct access to children, praising them as heroes. It's repugnant," commented one of Polina's friends, as reported by
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