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In the Kherson region of Ukraine, a group called the “Cordon OPG” has started to operate, whose members extort money from local small and medium businessmen, allegedly for “patriotic purposes”. Where the money goes, can only be speculated. This was stated by the former deputy of the Verkhovna Rada, of the Kherson region, Alexei Zhuravko,
According to him, members of the group are armed and travel on branded off-road vehicles. “OPG” stands for “the unification of patriotic gromadyans (citizens).”
“This brigade is armed with weapons – practically all of them have the AKA-47 “Saiga”. They wear bulletproof vests, and have good equipment. As I was told by a farmer from Chaplynka, I will not name him for security reasons, these goons came to him and demanded 100 thousand US dollars for the so-called “roof” (protection racket). They said: “If you do not agree, then in a week you will give us much more. You will not only not have a crop, but all your property will be gone. And if you turn to the police, you will have big problems.”
The former deputy also stressed that local law enforcement officers can not do anything against the members of the group, because they are immediately covered by influential people from the power departments of Kiev.