Former Putin aide died of ‘blunt force’ injuries

Mikhail Lesin was found dead in Irish-owned Dupont Circle hotel in Washington

A former close aide to Russian president Vladimir Putin of Russia who was found dead in a hotel room in November died of blunt force injuries to the head, the chief medical examiner's office here said on Thursday.

Russian state media reported that the aide, Mikhail Lesin, died in the hotel of a heart attack. Lesin (59), a former Kremlin minister, was found dead in November in the Irish-owned Dupont Circle Hotel in Washington.

A member of Lesin’s family who reportedly spoke with RIA Novosti, the state news agency, also said Lesin had died of a heart attack.

The medical examiner’s office said Lesin’s body showed signs of blunt force injury not only to the head but to the neck and torso, as well as upper and lower extremities. The medical examiner’s office did not explain the timing of the announcement, although officials said that findings often take 60 to 90 days. The matter remains the subject of a police investigation here.


A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police Department, Lt Sean Conboy, declined on Thursday to provide additional comment. Andrew Ames, a spokesman for the FBI in Washington, also had no comment.

The death of Lesin had prompted no shortage of speculation in the US and in Russia in recent months. Lesin’s body was found in a hotel room with no signs of life at about 11.30am on November 5, 2015.

Mr Lesin served as Russia’s minister of press and mass media from 1999 to 2004 and served as a presidential adviser from 2004 to 2009.

He became chief executive of Gazprom-Media, Russia’s largest media holding company in 2013, a position he held until 2015.

New York Times