Russian Skinheads Using Social Media To Lure, Kidnap And Publicly Torture Gay Teens

russian-neo-nazisRussia’s ongoing institutionalized homophobia has taken the form in “movements” by neo-Nazis to lure gay male teens over social media with the intention of kidnapping , bullying, and publicly torturing them. Victims are left traumatized with many reportedly committing suicide following the attacks.

According to Eastern European LGBT advocacy group, Spectrum Human Rights Alliance (SHRA), the campaign is spearheaded by “infamous Russian ultranationalist and former skinhead, Maxim Martsinkevich,” known as “Cleaver.” The neo-Nazis claim they are fighting pedophilia though they exclusively target gay male teenagers.

Using the Russian equivalent of Facebook,, they lure their unsuspecting victims through personal ads. The teens then show up for what they think is a date, only to be captured, bullied and “often tortured while being recorded on video.” These atrocities are sometimes performed in the open before an indifferent and even supportive public.

In one of these videos, posted to YouTube, a group of neo-Nazis tease and bully a 15-year-old boy before kicking and pouring urine on him. The video cuts out after that, leaving the boy’s fate unknown. The video’s description notes, however, that all of his personal details including his name, parents’ names, address and school, were released to the general public and viewed by millions of Russians.

Unsurprisingly, police refuse to arrest any of the perpetrators as homophobia is government-sanctioned thanks to Russia’s odious anti-gay “propaganda” law. occasionally shuts down groups and profiles associated with these acts, but they simply start up again the next day. The site’s founder, Pavel Durov, resides in the U.S. and has yet to comment on these campaigns.

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  • Snapper59

    And yet there’s a Stoli ad right on this site and people are calling for Olympic athletes to boycott the Russian 2014 Games and boycotts of Olympic sponsors like Gillette and Coca-Cola but NOT NBC or MSNBC who poured billions into it.
    Has Rachel Maddow said anything? Hey Rachel, NBC withdrawing would probably have more of an effect on Putin than your local bar dumping Stoli down the drain.

  • Shanestud

    This is so horrible it makes me sick

  • penny143

    @snapper59 please check you facts before you comment. Stoli is not a homophobic company.

  • tazz602

    Homophobia or not – regardless of the motivation this is a fundamental human rights issue and the fact that the UN and other countries are allowing this institutional torturing of it’s citizens is disgusting. I cannot believe the world stage is silent on the issue. Strip away the homosexual aspect and I don’t think this would be ignored by everyone like it is today.

    @penny143 – you are RIGHT – people need to do research and not knee-jerk reactions – the Stoli brand name is owned in the US by Pepsi and is now made in Latvia – NOT Russia.

  • tookietookie


  • RJ


  • Ottoman

    Stoli is partially owned by the Russian government and licensing will be fully owned by them again as early as next year thanks to a lawsuit the Russian government just won.

  • Ottoman

    “Stoli’s production process involves both Russia and Latvia. Stoli is made from Russian ingredients (wheat, rye and raw alcohol) blended with pure artesian well water at our historic distillery and bottling facility Latvijas Balzams in Riga, Latvia” – Straight from the horse’s err Stoli CEO’s mouth.

    It was funny when Queerty defended itself by playing up the Latvian bottling aspect but neglected to acknowledge the actual ingredients come from Russia.

    Let’s see Stoli condemn the Russian government’s actions in Russian, on their Russian language webpages and wherever else they can.

  • 2eo

    Can we please mention that these fascists are also orthodox christians please. Lets not let them off the hook for their hate.

  • Polaro


  • Snapper59

    As Dan Savage says, the corporation that owns Stoli is located in Russia. Lets say they make it in Jersey and bottle it in Maine, while they are happily selling it to queers in the UK and US, what are they doing at home??

  • hephaestion

    Russia has become a monstruous gutter country. The police there are evil and so is Putin’s government. Decent people are scared to speak out, but it is time for another revolution there.

  • jeff4justice

    @Snapper59: Not to mention RT news and their many supposed progressive voices. I’d rather watch Abby Martin over Rachel Maddow but since they’re funded by the Russian government not so much anymore.

    I’m also boycotting American corporations that donate to our 2-party system charade of lie-based wars, slavery, poverty, pollution, and eradication of human rights – oh wait – then I would have to become Amish. Then again, vodka and Olympics aren’t essential needs are they.

    Governments all throughout the world are run by sociopaths hurting one group of people or another.

  • Deepdow

    I don’t know why Queerty is marketing Stoli to us for FUCKS sake.

  • Deepdow


    Me too, I liked RT, a lot, but ever since this shit, never.

  • Deepdow

    The most Original Stoli Guy?

    Oh, you mean the dead one floating in a river in Russia?

    I fucking can’t even today …

  • erikwm

    @Deepdow: Exactly.

    Queerty needs to stop this “Most Original Stoli Guy” competition. This is unconscionable and anything even remotely associated with it must be shunned — that includes Stoli.

  • stfallon1028

    These “men” if you can call them that, have no honor, and the fact that they get off on luring and exploiting their own countrymen makes them that much more despicable. All 434 members of the Russian Duma who voted this legislation into affect should be arrested and charged with crimes against humanity. This situation becomes more sickening by the day, especially since its taking place in a developed country and world power like the former USSR

  • Charlie in Charge

    Abhorrent, disgusting, cruel.

    Is Stoli in any way responsible or is our anger at them merely a way we can feel like we are somehow making a difference in this? Do we see a correlation?

  • 2eo

    @Charlie in Charge: There is no correlation, it stems from the fact Stoli are perceived as “traitorous” by these fascist mentalists by conducting business in the west and funding gay events.

    So they occasionally show off bottles to dissuade the west into a pointless action against a company that has no part in any capacity to the deplorable situation. It’s a very deliberate right wing tactic.

  • andrew.agee

    What nobody seems to be mentioning is that that boy, in that picture is somebody’s child.

    All sexual politics aside, it breaks my heart to see that kid, on his knees, weeping, knowing not just what he has been through, but what the rest of his life will be like, or if he will even have one.

    It’s unlikely that his family, given the role of both politics and the Orthodox “church” play in their lives will be welcoming or supportive, that there will counseling available, or a victim’s crisis center like our own rape crisis center, or even health care to deal with the physical trauma of any injuries he’s suffered.

    I’m reminded of (some) of the moral “outrage” when the gay Rutgers student Tyler Clementi threw himself off the GW bridge for many of the same reasons. Fear, shame, self-loathing don’t need a language.

    Russia likes to think of itself as a “western” country, it’s part of the G8, the G20, it has nukes, and arts and a booming (albeit corrupt) industry. Not to mention that it bribed it’s way to getting awarded the 2104 games.

    Yes, Carter got no end of flack for boycotting the 1980 games over politics. But clearly things have not changed.

    Boycott the 2014 Sochi Games!

  • Gigi Gee

    What is this still on YouTube?

  • Tommysole

    The soviets are gone but……………it is still Russia, and all the baggage that goes with it.
    My dad told me as a child and has told me my entire life, “Thomas, never trust a Russian!”

    Of course is Hungarian and he escaped once the Filthy stinking Russians decided they wanted his country as another satellite.
    half his family was killed and the other half escaped with him. he arrived on American soil nearly eight months later. Broken collar bone, numerous bullet wounds, and a fractured femur.

  • Tommysole

    @Ottoman: Anything Russian is BAD! Filthy stinking invaders.

  • wes mccomas

    This is just awful! There should be a international embargo on all countries which allow countries such Russia, Iran , Uganda…. To allow ( or even commit!) such blatant human rights violation against our gay brothers ( and sisters). However, this administration would have to look at their own existing e human rights violation

  • scoobydube

    @tazz602: Latvia will ALWAYS belong to MOTHER Russia …..

  • scoobydube

    @Tommysole: My family and I came from Poland and my mother said the SAME THING !!!!!!

  • Jacob Jake

    this story makes me want to adopt all the russian gays. i do not know where we’ll live, but another place

  • sonicsteven

    This is simply horrific! Being a gay American living in Los Angeles, It is hard for me to even comprehend that the police won’t do anything about this kidnapping, torture, rape whatever happens. Like another poster said, this isomeone’s child. Look at those two cowardly men picking on someone like that! Just horrible! I say kidnap these white supremacist homophobic bigots and put them on display in West Hollywood with a sign explaining what they’ve done. Let’s see how “brave” they are then. They would soil their pants!

  • sirald66

    Vile creatures.

  • HernanMinogue

    Wow this is fucked up. Poor gay Russians. God bless them.

  • Ogre Magi

    @HernanMinogue: A very odd choice of words, given that the bashers say they have god on their side

  • sfbeast

    The US Olympic Team needs to boycott the upcoming Olympics. Enough is enough


    There is always POLISH vodka…however…there are bad men in all races/nationalities…one just needs to use commonsense in on’e playmate choices.

    You would NEVER run into a burning house in gasoline soaked clothes….so, why would you go cruising near an area where known hostile men hang out?

    So, it seems SNUFF films are back from the 1970’s????

  • damon459

    Luxembourg, July 25, 2013
    An Open Letter from the CEO of Stolichnaya Vodka to the LGBT community.
    The recent dreadful actions taken by the Russian Government limiting the rights of the LGBT community and the passionate reaction of the community have prompted me to write this letter to you.
    I want to stress that Stoli firmly opposes such attitude and actions. Indeed, as a company that encourages transparency and fairness, we are upset and angry. Stolichnaya Vodka has always been, and continues to be a fervent supporter and friend to the LGBT community. We also thank the community for having adopted Stoli as their vodka of preference.
    In the US, the brand’s commitment to the LGBT community has been ongoing for years. Among the best examples, I can cite the series produced by Stoli in 2006 called “Be Real: Stories from Queer America” which featured short documentaries on real life stories depicting the challenges and accomplishments of the LGBT community in the United States (
    Stoli is very proud of its current exclusive national partnership with and in search of the Most Original Stoli Guy. This is a fantastic program that started as a local initiative in Colorado and became a national platform. Previous national initiatives included serving as the official vodka of the Miami Gay Pride Week as well as ongoing events with focus on Pride month.
    Some great examples from other parts of the world are the support to the Durban Gay Pride, in South Africa (, the Pride Parade in Vienna, in cooperation with HOSI and CT, the largest LGBT communities in Austria and the Tel Aviv Pride Parade, taking place this weekend.
    This letter also gives me the opportunity to clear some of the confusion surrounding the Stolichnaya brand, based on facts found online that often inaccurately link our company to the Russian Government. The Russian government has no ownership interest or control over the Stoli brand that is privately owned by SPI Group, headquartered in Luxembourg in the heart of Western Europe.
    Stoli’s production process involves both Russia and Latvia. Stoli is made from Russian ingredients (wheat, rye and raw alcohol) blended with pure artesian well water at our historic distillery and bottling facility Latvijas Balzams ( in Riga, Latvia (formerly part of the Russian Empire and then of the Soviet Union). Latvijas Balzams did not recently become part of the Stoli heritage, but has been one of its main production and bottling facilities since 1948. This has allowed the brand to deliver the outstanding quality it is recognized for consistently across the years. What changed in the last years is politics, with Latvia becoming an independent state part of the EU.
    We fully support and endorse your objectives to fight against prejudice in Russia. In the past decade, SPI has been actively advocating in favor of freedom, tolerance and openness in society, standing very passionately on the side of the LGBT community and will continue to support any effective initiative in that direction.

    Sincerely yours
    Val Mendeleev
    Chief Executive Officer
    SPI Group

  • Snapper59

    Val Mendeleev, the chief executive officer of SPI Group, the owner of the Stolichnaya brand, confirmed in an open letter on July 25 that SPI produces this vodka in Russia and that SPI has offices and operations in Russia. Stolichnaya is a Russian vodka that is owned by a company that was founded in Russia in 1991.

    On the same day that SPI released its open letter to the Advocate, we learned that Russian thugs, emboldened by Russia’s anti-gay law, have taken to gay web sites to lure gay people to supposed encounters where they are viciously beaten. This is just the latest in a series of violent attacks against LGBT Russians and foreign LGBT nationals in Russia.

    This violence follows news reports of Russian police and prosecutors targeting LGBT people and groups in Russia for arrests and trials. At least two Russian LGBT groups have gone underground as a result.

    In the open letter, Mr. Mendeleev cited a few LGBT events where SPI promoted its Stolichnaya brand as evidence of the company’s support for our community. Mr. Mendeleev, marketing will not save LGBT lives.

    A single open letter that was discreetly placed with a single gay publication in the US will not help LGBT Russians nor will it have an impact on the Russian government’s anti-gay campaign. This and your refusal made in an earlier statement to confront the Russian government’s anti-gay bigotry make clear that you are not the fervent supporter and friend to the LGBT community you claim to be.

    By its own admission, SPI Group operates in Russia and pays taxes to the Russian government. That money funds these continuing attacks on LGBT people and organizations in Russia. Queer Nation will continue its boycott of Stolichnaya and other Russian vodkas until this anti-gay law is repealed and the Russian government guarantees the safety of its LGBT citizens and foreign LGBT nationals in Russia.

    We will not help you fund the Russian war on LGBT people.

    Queer Nation

  • Ryan1492

    Can someone explain why the International Olympic Committee voted to allow this horrible country to host the games? Russia has a long tradition of crushing any form of dissent, which should be reason enough to have excluded them from consideration. And there is substantial evidence that the Russian government poisoned and killed a British citizen in Great Britain. The IOC is joke. I will avoid watching the upcoming games, and I will avoid buying any products that come from this evil empire.

  • Teleny

    This is terrible. Where is the UN?

  • Dionte

    Hate must trump child abuse.

  • BlogZilla

    Russia is lawless, scary, and ice cold place. More free than the USA , which unfortunately also means criminals are freer to do as they please just like in Mexico

  • BlogZilla

    Another thing is, hmm you don’t see them luring homosexual females to their trap, do you? I;ll never understand what it is about the idea of a homosexual male that stirs so much hate in people. It’s only homosexual males that stir up hate, not females. I just don’t get it. After all, sexual doesn’t mean violent or hateful. Sexual activity relates to pleasure and kindness.

  • fredhotman

    Russia of to day is no better than a thorough fascist state with Tzar Putin & Patriach Kirill ruling the country with an iron fist. That thugs, have a free hand to pursue and torture LGBT is revolting and a blight to that country. The Olympic games have no guarantees for the safety of anybody. The authorities will have no compunction of entrapment specially that a law is available to support this. Boycott Sochi. Boycott the games it is like Germanys Olympics of 1936. While it went on the Jews were terrorised now its the Gays. Show that you care & support persecuted gays in Russia.

  • jeff4justice

    @Deepdow: Imma try to interview Abby Martin of RT news since she’ll be at a nearby event early August and I’ll ask her about this. Wish me luck in scoring the interview.

  • Kangol


    Thank you! They’re nationalist, Orthodox Christian homophobic monsters, whose behavior is being enabled by Russia’s leaders and its parliament. Beyond disgusting, and utterly and totally inhumane.

    I agree that we should boycott this horrible country, its Olympics, and everything to do with the Russian state.

    But we should also do everything we can to help Russian LGBT people, who can’t boycott their own country and are very vulnerable right now, as the torture of these young LGBT Russian people is making crystal clear.

  • wakeupscreaming

    From a historical context, any Russians referencing themselves as (neo) nazis is questionable, as it was nazis that invaded and killed millions of Russians in WWII.

    I’m not seeing any references these guys tormenting gays are Christian or religious. If anything, they are non-religious.

    It’s disgusting what’s happening in Russia. Putin sees the population shrinking and sees that as a threat to the economy, hence the measures to curtail any perceived threat to population growth.

  • LadyL

    This is so upsetting I hardly know what to say. Why isn’t there a global outcry about this? Why isn’t the world media talking about it? How much worse do things have to get in Russia?

  • Daniel-Reader

    So should the global GLBTA community still uphold all the other international treaties with respect to countries that violate human rights? Or is it fair to say those treaties are null and void?

  • ali15

    How awful. So heartbreaking. Poor kid. Probably thousands of kids. This has to stop. I agree with LadyL, why no global outcry? It feels frighteningly, too close to Nazi Germany. Having the Winter Olympic Games in Russia would be the height of hypocrisy and profanity. Each of us can tweet, write letter to the IOC, do what we can to prevent Russia from hosting the Games.

  • Javer

    This is Maxim’s instagram page, which includes some of his victims. Can someone try reporting it? I’ve already done it but they haven’t responded yet.

  • Derek Williams

    I wonder how much longer the Moscow Times will even be free to print sensible opinions like this. Now that homosexuality has been recriminalised by the Russian government, persecution and violent attacks on homosexuals are effectively sanctioned by the state, anti-gay pogroms are popping up everywhere, with the victims of assault being arrested instead of their attackers. Gay teenagers are being lured to parks and beaten up by gangs who unabashedly post pictures of themselves and their victims on social media networks like YouTube and Facebook, with one young boy killed recently. This by the way, is in the name of “protecting children”. Russian police do not investigate bashing murders of gay people, because the Russian state has declared war on people who are born homosexual. The Russian Orthodox Church clergy themselves advocate violence and openly participate in it. They are immune from prosecution, because they see the murder of homosexuals as “God’s work”.

    If the homosexual composer Tchaikowsky were around today, he wouldn’t be alive for long and his music certainly wouldn’t be allowed to be performed. He was after all forced to commit suicide in his day because of his sexuality. The next step will be the removal of his works from all Russian ballet and orchestra performances, then the works of other great Russian artists who happen to be homosexual will be disappeared from Russian libraries.

    Once the Russian state has successfully tested the waters by scapegoating small, powerless and persecuted minorities like LGBT, it will come after the Jews next with the impunity given to it by the Russian people who hate Jews, Gays and other minorities with a passion, and then it’s back to the police state, where this time, the church are the police.

    The Russian government have chosen well when they came after homosexuals, because they know we will never be numerous enough to defend ourselves since we are only 5-10% of the population. Moreover, we are born to heterosexual parents, and so are a perpetually self renewing scapegoatable minority that can be used to blame everything on, from earthquakes to the economy. Thus the Russian government doesn’t need to be accountable to its people, since everything can be always stated to be the fault of the Gays, or the Jews.

    Meanness is not a positive driving force in Evolution, therefore the West needs to separate itself entirely from this vile regime in every way possible until it self destructs, and allow Russia’s LGBT citizens to flee the country as political refugees.

    Boycotts of Russian products are starting, and there’s not a question in my mind that the Winter Olympics should be vacated from Sochi to friendly shores, a country with facilities from previous Olympic hostings. I suggest Greece, a former Olympics host, where the games first began, and which needs the money, and doesn’t have laws against homosexuality.

  • Spike

    Hey Queerty, the kid in the pic on his knees should be your Stoli Guy!

Comments are closed.