Putin 'wants to arrest ex of alleged lover', 39, amid bribery claims

Putin’s authorities ‘want to arrest the colonel ex-boyfriend of his “lover” Alina Kabaeva’ amid claims he sabotaged security at strategic Arctic ports in ‘bribe-taking scandal’

  • Gymnast Kabaeva today marks her 39th birthday in Sochi, where Putin is visiting
  • The gold medalist and ex-MP is rumoured mistress of Kremlin leader ‘since 2008’
  • Kabaeva’s former police captain ex has been accused of bribery by Putin’s CIA
  • Colonel Shalva Museliana, 52,  fled overseas after alleged ‘theft of state funds’
  • Putin: ‘I do not permit interference [in my private life]. It must be respected’

The ex-boyfriend of Vladimir Putin’s alleged mistress is being hunted by the Russian president’s personal CIA.

Former police captain Shalva Museliana, 52, dated Olympic gymnast and ex-MP Alina Kabaeva.

Ms Kabaeva today celebrates her 39th birthday in Sochi, where Putin is visiting.

She has been Putin’s alleged mistress since 2008, when she served in the Duma.

Colonel Museliana is accused by the Russian Investigative Committee of ‘theft of state funds’ linked to a series of sabotage Arctic ports.

Colonel Museliana (left) is pictured in public with then-girlfriend Alina Kabaeva (right)

Putin hosted journalists at the Kremlin shortly after Kabaeva’s Olympic gold success in 2004

The fugitive’s alleged crimes came when he served as a colonel in charge of ‘anti-criminal security measures’ in the Russian national guard, a force that reports directly to Putin.

The Russian Investigative Committee is led by a university classmate of Putin’s.

Ms Kabaeva’s former boyfriend faces jail if located in his foreign hideaway and extradited to Moscow.

He was married with a young daughter when he embarked on a relationship with Kabaeva in the early 2000s, and he said before she met Putin: ‘We have been dating for almost two-and-a-half years, and I think I am her first and last [man]. Everything else is our private matter.’

The former police captain (left) is accused of swiping state funds in an alleged bribery scandal

A teenage Kabaeva (right) smiles with Putin (left) during the gymnast’s visit to the Kremlin

Soon after they split Kabaeva vowed to ‘stay friends’.

Whispers appeared that she had begun a secret relationship with the Kremlin leader, who was married at the time.

These were always denied, but recently there have been new reports that she and Putin – who will be 70 this year – have at least two children together.

Putin this week flew to his favourite Black Sea resort – where Kabaeva is thought to live – and toured an elite school.

The Kremlin never comments on Putin’s private life or rumours that the star is Russia’s secret first lady.

Putin awards Ms Kabaeva a ‘Fatherland Merit’ medal in 2005 shortly before she became an MP

A fierce nationalist, Kabaeva is pictured wearing a dress with Russia’s coat of arms in 2018

Museliana and other defendants are accused of bribe-taking in the supply of snowmobiles, all-terrain vehicles, and speedboats to the guard’s Arctic forces.

The Investigative Committee ruled ‘that Colonel Shalva Museliana was the one who organised theft of state funds’, reported business newspaper Kommersant.

The equipment was to protect the ports of Provedeniya, Tiksi, Pevek and Sabetta – and was purchased after an alleged bribe from the suppliers.

The criminal group ‘was distinguished by a clear distribution of roles, impeccable discipline, and the ability to conspire’, Kremlin investigators added.

Though she has not been sanctioned abroad, the US and the EU are thought to be considering it. Kabaeva runs a Russia-themed gymnastics festival, where the army ‘Z’ symbol was common

The accusations against Kabaeva’s ex-lover and four other senior Russian guards could result in up to five years behind bars.

Museliana is reportedly on Russia’s international wanted list.

‘We have parted, it was a mutual decision,’ Kabaeva said at the time. ‘We kept good relations and I think we’ll stay friends.’

‘[Museliana] taught me a lot about life and I am very grateful to him’, she added.

A recent report in a Swiss broadsheet newspaper said a doctor from the country had delivered two of Putin’s sons to Kabaeva, one in 2015 in Switzerland and the second in Moscow in 2019.

Putin yesterday toured the elite Sirius education centre in Sochi, established the same year the first son was allegedly born.

It has been described as ‘perhaps the most beautiful school in all Russia’, and is aimed at ‘gifted children’.

Its trust is led by Putin and his close allies.

The school is on land that has been cut out of Krasnodar region and unusually classified as ‘federal territory’ – controlled by the Kremlin.

Kabaeva was reported to have been hiding either in Switzerland or a hi-tech nuclear bunker in Siberia.

But she was seen last month in Moscow posing in front of the ‘Z’ insignia of Putin’s war in Ukraine.

Putin is currently visiting Sochi, the Black Sea resort where Kabaeva is rumoured to reside

She is one of Russia’s most decorated gymnasts, winning a gold medal at the 2004 Olympics in Athens and bronze at Sydney in 2000.

Putin has two officially acknowledged children – Maria, 37, and Katerina, 35 – both from first wife Lyudmila.

Dr Maria Vorontsova, a year younger than Kabaeva, was born when the Russian president was a KGB spy in Germany.

She is a leading researcher at the National Medical Research Center for Endocrinology of the Ministry of Health of Russia.

Her sister Katerina Tikhonova is deputy director of the Institute for Mathematical Research of Complex Systems at Moscow State University.

Both daughters have been sanctioned by the West, unlike Kabaeva. Yet the EU and US are reportedly considering it.

Before her alleged affair with Putin, Ms Kabaeva had a fiery tabloid romance with the colonel

Also unsanctioned is Putin’s first unacknowledged ‘love child’, Luiza Rozova, 19.

Luiza is the daughter of cleaner-turned-multimillionaire Svetlana Krivonogikh, 45, now part-owner of a major Russian bank. 

She is one of the country’s wealthiest women, with an estimated £74 million financial and property fortune.

Rumours first linked Kabaeva romantically to Putin as long ago as 2008 when she was a pro-Kremlin MP.

The newspaper which printed the story was rapidly closed down.

Putin – who in 2013 announced his divorce from wife Lyudmila, a former Aeroflot stewardess – has previously said: ‘I have a private life in which I do not permit interference.

Museliana (pictured) reportedly gifted Ms Kabaeva a Mercedes while he was still married

‘It must be respected.’

He deplored ‘those who with their snotty noses and erotic fantasies prowl into others’ lives’.

Kabaeva is on record as saying she had met a man who ‘I love very much’, gushing: ‘Sometimes you feel so happy that you even feel scared.’

Kabaeva once posed almost nude for Maxim magazine and was described as ‘full of sex’ by a photographer.

There have been many reports of her wearing a wedding ring, but no records of a marriage.

She is reported to have a fleet of Maybach limousines at her disposal, and was seen surrounded by a squad of machine-gun toting security guards on visits to a Moscow cafe, likely indicating she qualifies for state-level security.

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