Relatives of prisoners recruited by the Wagner PMC to participate in the war against Ukraine are not recommended to open coffins. The wife of one of the prisoners told Dozhd about this. The TV channel found several more publications with similar information in social networks.
Dozhd's interlocutor, Angelina (name changed), said that in the fall her husband was recruited into the Wagner PMC. She is sure that this happened by force, since the man did not consider Ukraine an enemy country and went there to visit relatives. At the end of December, Angelina received a call from a representative of PMC Wagner, who said that her husband had died. The prisoner's family received a zinc coffin, medals, a certificate for death in the fight for the "LPR" and a death certificate signed in Bakhmut.
To Angelina’s question about whether her husband is exactly in the coffin, the Wagner PMC answered in the affirmative. The woman was assured that before being sent to the war, “some DNA” is taken from the mercenaries, and when their corpses are found, “they compare”. However, a few weeks after the funeral, an unknown man wrote to Angelina, who said that her husband was in Debaltseve. Soon after, she received a call from a Ukrainian number. The caller introduced himself as an SBU officer and stated that Angelina's husband was alive and in Ukraine. He said that the prisoner was detained at the end of December and now he is under arrest. In addition, the alleged SBU officer described to Angelina the same wound, from which, according to Wagner PMC, her husband died. However, in his version of the story, the man was saved.
According to Dozhd, the Federal Penitentiary Service told Angelina that "it's all confidential." The military commandant's office of Ukraine stated that the husband is listed as wounded and is in captivity. In the department of the SBU of the Kharkiv region, "Rain" could not confirm or deny the information.
The TV channel also reports other similar cases. In chats and public pages related to the war in Ukraine, the relatives of the recruited prisoners write that they are afraid to open the coffins with them. Representatives of PMC Wagner recommend that they do not do this.