Bellingcat names retired Russian military intelligence officer involved in downing of MH-17

On Wednesday, February 14, independent expert and journalist group Bellingcat released a new report about the investigation of the downing of the Malaysian Boeing aircraft, which had been operating Malaysian Airlines flight MH-17 in the airspace above the Donbas. The document establishes the identity of an individual officer, nicknamed ‘Gloomy’, who had apparently been involved in the carriage of ‘Buk’ anti-aircraft missile system that caused the Boeing to crash.

The report’s authors noted that the Security Service of Ukraine previously identified ‘Gloomy’ as an officer of the Russian Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU) named Sergei Nikolayevich Petrovsky, based on a number of intercepted telephone conversations. After reviewing messages in social networks, publications in the Russian media and e-mail data, Bellingcat has concluded that a different Russian citizen, retired colonel Sergey Dubinsky, is actually behind the pseudonym ‘Gloomy’. Dubinsky is a veteran of military operations in Afghanistan and Chechnya and later served in the 22nd brigade of the GRU.

According to the authors of the investigation, in August 2014, shortly after the crash of flight MH-17, Dubinsky was promoted to the rank of Major General of the self-proclaimed DPR. He was later expelled from Donetsk for financial crimes and now lives in Russia, where he lives a ‘fairly luxurious’ lifestyle by Russian standards, according to the publication.

  Russia, MH17, Donbas, Bellingcat, GRU