Russian war criminal Sergeant Vadim Shishimarin has confessed in a Kiev court that he deliberately shot and killed a Ukrainian civilian on the orders of his commander
Sergeant Vadim Shishimarin, the Russian tank commander on trial for war crimes in Ukraine, has sensationally pleaded guilty.
Before a court in Kyiv, Shishimarin was asked by a judge whether he shot a 62-year-old civilian in the head in the village of Chupakhivka in the first days of the war.
The 21-year-old tank commander only answered “yes”.
Shishimarin now faces life behind bars.
Ukrainian prosecutor Andriy Synyuk told reporters at the start of Shishimarin’s trial: “This is the first case today. But soon there will be many of these cases.”
Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova added: “Shishimarin is actually physically located in Ukraine. We do not start a case in absentia but directly with the person who killed a civilian and this is a war crime.”
Prosecutors said Shishimarin was ordered to kill the civilian to prevent him from revealing the presence of Russian troops in the area.
He admits to firing multiple shots at the man with his Kalashnikov assault rifle through the open window of the car with an assault rifle, killing him instantly.
In a video released by the Security Service of Ukraine, Shishimarin admitted: “I was ordered to shoot.
“I shot a (bullet) at him. He falls. And we kept going.”
Shishimarin said when his unit invaded Ukraine he was told he and his comrades would be taking part in military exercises in southwestern Russia, some 200 miles from Ukraine.
After the tank column he was traveling in came under fire from Ukrainian forces on February 28, Shishimarin and his crew impounded a civilian’s car and drove to the village east of Kyiv.
He was later captured while on a mission to bring home wounded Russian troops.
Another video clip released by Ukraine’s security services shows Shishimarin calling his father and telling him, “They treat us well here.”
Shishimarin’s father told Ukrainian interviewer Volodymyr Zolkin that his son was sent to war under false pretenses: “He’s just a soldier. I don’t think he knew where he was going.
“They say he invaded and we are told they defended the country. He did not know. He was told. You hear one thing and we hear the other.”