'Igor the Russian' joins laundry list of arrests in connection with 'steroid king' murder

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Jerome Booysen, Mark Lifman and William Stevens outside the Cape Town Magistrate's Court.
Jerome Booysen, Mark Lifman and William Stevens outside the Cape Town Magistrate's Court.
PHOTO: Adrian de Kock, Netwerk24
  • The Hawks have added one more name to the long list of people they allege were involved in the murder of "steroid king" Brian Wainstein.
  • Igor Russol will join his co-accused, who include businessman Mark Lifman, in the Western Cape High Court next month.
  • Three people have already been sentenced regarding some of the preparations for the murder.

Another person implicated in the murder of steroid dealer Brian Wainstein appeared in a Cape Town court on Wednesday.

Igor Russol, known as "Igor the Russian", joins businessman Mark Lifman as an accused in the matter.

Wainstein was shot dead in his bed in Constantia in 2017.

This was the latest in a string of arrests of people the State alleged were part of a sprawling criminal enterprise that did not bother with conventional authorities when disputes arose, preferring to arrange a hit instead.

READ | Underworld extortion matter - how it affects you

Hawks spokesperson Katlego Mogale said Russol faced charges of conspiracy to commit murder, contravention of gun control laws, and charges relating to gang association. He joins a long list of accused, including Lifman and Jerome Booysen.

Late Anti-Gang Unit detective, Lieutenant Colonel Charl Kinnear, testified that Russol had also worked for alleged underworld figure Nafiz Modack during a period when competition for nightclub security services was high.

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Modack is currently in custody on charges of conspiracy to murder Kinnear, who was killed outside his Cape Town house in September 2020. He said he was the innocent victim of policemen who did not like his stance of ridding nightclubs of drugs.

News24 reported earlier that Russol, a Ukrainian, once worked for murdered nightclub boss and bodyguard Cyril Beeka. Beeka was shot dead along Robert Sobukwe Road in Bellville South, in 2011.

In 2012, IOL reported that Russol had arrived in South Africa to join his old friend, Yuri Ulianitski, in the nightclub security business.

Ulianitski was ultimately shot dead in his car in Milnerton in 2007, along with his small daughter.

Russol also reportedly ran a gentleman's club in Bree Street, Cape Town, which was eventually shut down.

He was arrested in 2012 for the alleged extortion of businesses, and was represented by late lawyer Pete Mihalik during his bail application. Mihalik was murdered in front of his children while doing a school run in Green Point, Cape Town on 30 October 2018.

Two of the accused in the Wainstein murder have already been murdered. Red Stevens was shot dead in Kraaifontein on 2 February 2021, and Jason Maits was shot dead in Mitchells Plain, just over a month later, on 5 March 2021.

Co-accused former security company owner Matthew Breet, from West Beach, eventually took a plea and sentencing deal in the Wainstein murder and was sentenced to 20 years behind bars.

Cheslin Adams and Fabian Cupido, who drove the vehicle the day Wainstein was killed, were sentenced to 25 years' imprisonment each.

Russol was released on R15 000 bail. He will join the other accused in the Western Cape High Court on 5 August.

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