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Police officer detained in Tajik students assault case in Moscow

MOSCOW, June 9 (RIA Novosti) - A police officer has been detained in connection with the beating of six Tajik students at a Moscow dormitory, prosecutors said Friday.

The students from the former Soviet republic in Central Asia were beaten and robbed Wednesday evening in a dormitory of the State Management University by a group led by a man claiming to be a police officer.

The Prosecutor General's Office said the 27-year-old suspect would be charged with robbery and hooliganism, and that an investigation had been launched to catch his accomplices. The case is being overseen personally by Moscow's chief prosecutor.

The attack happened around 8 p.m. Moscow time (4 p.m. GMT) Wednesday, when a man dressed in civilian clothes knocked on the door of a student room at the dormitory in southeast Moscow claiming to be a police officer, and presented what students said was identification. When a student opened the door, six more men in plainclothes broke in.

"They beat the students with an iron wrench and belts and kicked them," prosecutors said. "One of the students dropped his mobile phone, and the assailants grabbed it and went away."

The assault is the latest in a series of attacks on foreigners in Moscow. In a murder that shocked the country, Vagan Abramyants, a 17-year-old Armenian student at the Moscow Academy of Management, was stabbed to death on the platform of Pushkinskaya metro station in the center of Moscow at about 5 p.m. April 22.

But prosecutors said they the latest crimes were not being considered as racially motivated.

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