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    Over 11,000 people are reported to be members of mafia-type criminal groups across Russia, the Interior Ministry said on Thursday.

    Over 11,000 people are reported to be members of mafia-type criminal groups across Russia, the Interior Ministry said on Thursday.

    "We have counted 249 organized criminal groups across the Russian Federation," criminal investigation department head Iskander Galimov told a news briefing, adding that the exact number of people in organized crime groups was 11,622.

    It is unclear how the ministry arrived at such a precise figure.

    Some 20 criminal structures were discovered in Moscow and the Moscow Region alone, Galimov said, adding that the largest groups had up to 500 members.

    The ministry also said it was aware of 149 crime bosses currently operating in Russia, with around a third of them active in and around Moscow.

    One of Russia's most notorious crime bosses, Vyacheslav Ivankov, was buried in Moscow last October at a lavish and high-profile funeral ceremony.

    Ivankov, or Yaponchik (little Japanese) as he was commonly known, reportedly due to his love of sushi and martial arts, was buried at the capital's Vagankovskoye cemetery. He had been severely wounded in a shooting in July 2009.

    MOSCOW, January 28 (RIA Novosti)

     

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