Depositor In Failed Russian Bank Loses It, Takes Hostages, Demands $700,000 Ransom

Tyler Durden's picture

Earlier today, the Central Bank of Russia announced that starting April 21, it would revoke the license of Moscow’s Bank Zapadny. According to reports, "the bank had cooked its books and failed to comply with regulations on the amount of assets a financial organization must maintain to ensure its stability, the central bank said." In other words, your typical FDIC Failure Friday only on Monday morning. Hardly notable. It is what happened next that was shocking. Shortly after the bank shutdown announcement, an armed man took three hostages at a Belgorod branch of precisely this failed Bank Zapadny.

Considering the bank is located in a Russian city in proximity to Ukraine some early speculation suggested the two may be related, however it appears
this may simply be the latest case of a disgruntled bank client taking matters into his own hands.  As RT reports, "he may be a client of the bank wishing to withdraw his deposit despite the bank losing its license.....Life News tabloid says it has identified one of the attackers as 46-year-old Aleksandr Vdovin, a client who holds the bank’s promissory notes for a large sum, and who decided to reimburse them at gunpoint."

Well, that's one way of dealing with bail-ins...

RT reports more:

The hostage situation is developing at a branch of the Zapadny bank in Belgorod, a city in western Russia in a region bordering Ukraine.


The armed man went into the bank on Monday morning and is now demanding a certain sum of money, police confirmed. There are three people being held hostage inside, according to preliminary information.


Earlier unconfirmed media reports said the man is armed with a Saiga hunting carbine and is demanding 25 million rubles ransom ($700,000).


Police have evacuated a school and a kindergarten near the branch as precaution. The region’s police chief, General Viktor Pesterev, is at the scene. Negotiations are underway.

Curiously, unlike in Cyprus where capital controls were taken by the general public relatively calmly, in Russia the limitation on deposit withdrawals resulted in a prompt hostage situation.

The withdrawal of the license means that the bank’s clients will have to wait for some time before they can get their deposits. Only deposits no bigger than about $20,000 will be reimbursed by the Russian national bank deposit insurance agency. Creditors holding larger debts will have to wait for the bank’s likely bankruptcy.

More on the situation:

Life News tabloid says it has identified one of the attackers as 46-year-old Aleksandr Vdovin, a client who holds the bank’s promissory notes for a large sum, and who decided to reimburse them at gunpoint. The report added that the hostages were the branch manager, a cashier and a janitor.


LifeNews also spoke to a friend of the alleged hostage taker, Gennady Vechorka, who said his holding up of the bank branch was most likely an act of desperation. He said Vdovin, a father of two, is a rational man and would release the hostages unharmed, if he is given some time to cool down and think straight.


The tabloid spoke to Vdovin himself on the phone. He sounded rather calm and said he was about to settle his differences with the bank. He said he tried to withdraw his deposits in a proper way two days ago, but was denied. He also agreed to allow his friend, Vechorka, into the bank to act as a negotiator.

Finally, bankers being bankers, only in this case not TBTF, they promptly found a culprit - the central bank, only in this case the issue was not being bailed out of course:

Vladimir Semago, chair of the Zapadny board of directors, blamed Russia’s central bank and its move to revoke the license for the hostage situation, saying the decision was rushed and unwise.

A video clip of the hostage situation from a neighboring hotel in Belgorod:

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sampo's picture

Somewhere in this world, capitalism still works.

MeMadMax's picture

I would be pissed too.

Tabarnaque's picture

Welcome to the world of Bail-Ins. Soon coming to a bank near you!

GetZeeGold's picture



I wouldn't offer more than 650K.....I think he's bluffing.

fonzannoon's picture

"promissory notes" LOL

it was yours, you gave it to us, we promised to give it back...but...well you are not going to believe this...we don't have it. I know, crazy right?!

Harlequin001's picture

My heart bleeds purple fucking piss for any investor in a systemically insolvent financial institution that finds itself one day well, insolvent.


Oh regional Indian's picture

When good people are driven to go nuts, watch out.,these are all test-runs....

If you are ever wondering what to dooooo!!!!!

Stay calm.... ;-)


topspinslicer's picture

ORI -- that was a fun read, sweet even

Oh regional Indian's picture

Ahhhhaaaha,,,,,thanks TSS...topspinslice...oxy more on?

fudge's picture

gone you say ?

The FSB in the Chelyabinsk region in recent days received several statements similar to the following:

"""I am so and so took bank loan, but then I did not know that the founders of the bank - foreign companies headquartered in the member countries of NATO. I do not mind to pay back the loan, but can not because these actions fall under article 275 of the Criminal Code - namely, providing financial assistance to a foreign state, international or foreign organization or their representatives in activities directed against the security of the Russian Federation.""

I will be laughing hard if this guys can pull this off.

withglee's picture


The collapse of WTC7 is proof positive that the USA Federal Government was the instigator of the so-called 9/11 terrorist act. Among statutes violated by the Federal Government are:

18 USC § 2332f - Bombings of places of public use, government facilities, public transportation systems and infrastructure facilities

18 USC § 2332a - Use of weapons of mass destruction



Making IRS payment is unlawful for many reasons. Among them are laws against supporting terrorists:

18 USC § 2339A - Providing material support to terrorists

18 USC § 2339C - Prohibitions against the financing of terrorism


The USA Federal Government is a proven terrorist. The Federal Reserve System is their enabling bank and proven financial manipulator. The IRS is the collection agency for that bank. Thus, IRS collections all fall under the following RICO statutes:


18 USC § 1962 - Prohibited activities


AUD's picture

Don't laugh. Those dollars in your wallet are the promissary notes of a certain bank.

giggler321's picture

>>"promissory notes" LOL

Here in the UK; the BofE has announced new plastic bank notes for £5 and £10 set end of 2015 whilst still considering the £50 note later on.

Those of you who have withdrawn before the great reset or confiscation order, call it what you will, may find out that your bank will not convert the old notes presently sitting under the bed, using anti-money laundering rules and regulation.

Very timing that they now want plastic notes.  Do we assume the reset is around this time?

Spumoni's picture

Tell 'em to call Bernanke - they can pay him off in FRN's and not lose a dime!

bobby02's picture

Uh, y'all realize "promissory notes" means that you are a creditor, not a depositor, right?

N2OJoe's picture

...And what is a depositor? An unsecured creditor.

bobby02's picture

No, depositors are still senior secured creditors. Before the Cyprus travesty, depositors were always super-senior, that is, they sat above all other senior secured creditors in the credit hiearchy.

In any event, promissory notes are and have always been junior unsecured debts - low men on the totem pole. This guy has no right to claim protection afforded to depositors. His claim on the bank's assets is to be satisfied if and only if senior debt, including depositors, is paid in full.

Cap Matifou's picture

In the name of the bank the apparent peril: Zapad means West.

firstdivision's picture

Capitalism in Russia?  Bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!  Clearly you've never done/tried to do business in Russia.  That's like saying the US is the pinnacle of Capitalism.

JuliaS's picture

The irony here is that the hostage taker's last name is "Vdovin", originating from the Russian word "vdova" which translates "widow".

I wonder if he's married.

Vice's picture

Ever ask people about FDIC? 


They have full & unquestionable faith. Most of the people I asked what the amount "guaranteed" was, they assumed it was all of what they had in there. 


Oh man, they'll never learn. 

MeMadMax's picture

Meh, if they are not smart enough to know the amount....


Then moar than likely they don't have anything close to that 250k... If anything ^.^

So Close's picture

My money or your life.   

Vice's picture

Even the ones that DO have that 250k. No idea! I couldn't believe it. 


In fact, thinking of that ZH deer accurately describes the general conversation. 

Winston of Oceania's picture

There is no actual money in the FDIC insurance pool, just another promise that will be fraught with capital controls regardless of the amount of the "missing balance".

Took Red Pill's picture

Yes, FDIC is severely under funded. If there was any major financial meltdown, most people would lose everything they have in the bank.

Seize Mars's picture

Is he MoHappy? Or Mo'Sad?

Quinvarius's picture

In a functioning economy, bank deposits are investments.  When banks stop making loans, you should realize there will be a problem getting any interest back.  When they make bad loans, you should realize you won't get your deposit back.  If you have 10% of your worth in gold, you should only have 5% in a bank.  It should be allocated as the riskiest part of your portfolio.  Banks have a historic global failure rate that puts bank deposits in the speculative category.

PT's picture

In the world of the average yob, money is proof that you did someone a favour, and as such is a claim on an equally proportionate portion of society's production.  In this world of imaginary fiat paper, I fail to see how average-yob-in-the-street's favour's should be forgotten just because the record of his favours has been transferred to Magical-Fairy-Dust-Land.  Magical-Fairy-Dust-Land has no problem receiving real fiat paper, i.e. "proof of doing a favour for someone in society", in return for doing zero actual favours for anyone in the rest of society.  We need to think harder.

nmewn's picture

All the bank has to do is make good on the notes the depositer is owed.

Whats the problem? ;-)

dracos_ghost's picture

Silly rabbit, that only applies to the notes the BANK holds. And they will be paid.

And OT, I didn't know Dark Helment from Spaceballs lived in Moscow.

Last of the Middle Class's picture

He just got the memo that all deposits are unsecured loans to the bank. All the lead in the world won't get his money back. Good luck with that.

post turtle saver's picture

true, but when you're ventilating skulls with a Saiga in each hand it does help to dull the pain

LeisureSmith's picture

Banks are known to be severely untrustworthy. With no interest to be had, why the fuck loan them your money? Would you loan money to this guy? ( insert picture of used car salesman turned crackhead here )

That person in the second pic is one corny looking character with a corny looking outfit.

PT's picture

1.  If you don't have direct deposit then you don't get the job.
2.  Lifetime confirmation bias.
3.  Convenience.
4.  Herd mentality.
5.  No idea of alternatives (also see 1)
6.  Fear.
7.  Too many bigger, more immediate problems.  No time to think about such things, especially in light of reasons 1 to 6.
8.  Ignorance, especially of Cyprus, let alone anything else mentioned on ZH.
9.  Could be more reasons but I guess that 2,3 and 4 would dominate from here onwards.

10.  Take a lesson from UFO alien abductors.  Keep it low key, only abduct one or two sheeple at a time, the rest of the herd will refuse to believe you exist, let alone think you are a problem that they should be concerned about.


jmcadg's picture

Of course this would naturally be bullish for the price of PMs.
Sorry, my bad, that should read bullshit for the price of PMs.

Fuck this.

christiangustafson's picture

Why didn't you call me?

I just did, but they said you left. This is a pickle, George, this is a pickle.

All right now, what happened? How did it start?

How does anything like this ever start? All I know is the bank called our loan.


About an hour ago. I had to hand over all our cash.

All of it?

Every cent of it, and it still was less than we owe.

Holy mackerel!

And then I got scared, George, and closed the doors. I . . . I . . . I . . .

The whole town's gone crazy.

williambanzai7's picture

And gold bugs are fools

BurningFuld's picture

Complete freekin' idiots. Real money! Stupid idea.

GetZeeGold's picture



Sewing gold into their cloth linings, they're nothing but filthy animals - Chuck Munger

BandGap's picture

I know, right?

Give the guy the 700K (geez, if that's rubles, good luck with that). What does the poor schlub do then? Arrest him as he's walking down the street with his bag of money. Lather, rinse, repeat.

Last of the Middle Class's picture

It occurs to me that at every level of wealth, from penniless to mega millionaire there is someone connected to our courrupt government with a politician in his pocket attempting to separate you from your money. intresting

Papasmurf's picture

A man and his money are soon party'ed.  Republican party, democratic party, labor party etc. . .

123dobryden's picture

BREAKING NEWS: Putin is on the closed

GetZeeGold's picture



As long as he stops at the Mississippi......I'm good.