He called himself sire and his lover had renamed her Josephine, from the name of Giuseppina di Beauharnais, Napoleon's first wife. The love for history, and, above all for the French emperor, the subject of ten-year studies, however, brought him far beyond a folkloristic interpersonal representation. Thus Oleg Sokolov, a professor at the University of St. Petersburg and one of the leading experts on the life and deeds of the French emperor, an academician of the Russian intelligentsia and close to Vladimir Putin, confessed today to the murder of his partner and former student, 24-year-old Anastassia Echtchenko. A story of passion and alcoholism that has shaken the entire academic world.
The professor, awarded the Legion of Honor in France in 2003 after teaching at the Sorbonne for some years, was arrested after being rescued in the Moika river, in St. Petersburg, a backpack. Inside, a macabre discovery, parts of the woman's arms. And he, in the water, dressed as Napoleon, who was desperately trying to make the young woman's remains disappear in the river. The police then found the rest of the victim's body, beheaded and without arms, in the man's apartment. The 63-year-old historian was then hospitalized for hypothermia, but today he was transferred to a police station for interrogation.
The lecturer was also a member of the ISSEP scientific council, the political school of the former French deputy Marion Marechal (nephew of Marine Le Pen) in Lyon, a post "immediately revoked". In front of his curriculum, "we could not imagine that he could commit this hateful act", the Institute commented in a statement, "expressing its condolences and its support for the victim's family".
"He admitted his guilt»said lawyer Alexander Pochuev of AFP, adding that he regretted what he did and has now cooperated. Reportedly, Sokolov was drunk but he said he would then commit suicide in the Peter and Paul Fortress, one of the most famous monuments of the former imperial capital. Pochuev stressed, beginning to strike up the defense of his client, that Sokolov may have been under stress or emotionally disturbed. "He is an elderly person»he said.
His passion for Napoleon led him and his beloved to be part of films and historical re-enactments of the Napoleonic era. Never, however, did the young woman think she would die this way at the hands of her sire.
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