Gang suspects killed in Moscow court

Three defendants have been killed in a court in the Russian capital, Moscow, after they tried to take the arms from security officers in an attempt to escape, officials say.

The incident happened as five suspected gang members attacked the agents who were escorting them in a lift to a hearing, the Interior Ministry said.

Three were killed when trying to escape. The two others suspects and three security officers were wounded.

The building was briefly evacuated.

The suspects were accused of being part of the notorious GTA Gang, named after the violent game series Grand Theft Auto.

The group of Central Asian nationals was suspected of killing 17 motorists in the Moscow area between 2012 and 2014. They forced cars to stop on a main road and killed the drivers for reasons as yet unknown.

All five suspects were handcuffed as they were being taken to a courtroom, Russia’s Investigative Committee said.

One of the suspects attacked and tried to strangle a guard as others attempted to seize the officers’ weapons, it added. It was not immediately clear how they managed to free themselves.

When the lift they were in opened on the third floor, Russian National Guard officers opened fire.

The security officers injured include a National Guard member, who had a gunshot wound and was taken to hospital, and two police officers, who sustained various injuries, according to the Interior Ministry.

A lawyer who was at the building when the incident happened said that at least 20 shots were heard.



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