Three Russian sisters accused of stabbing their mafia-boss father to death after years of alleged abuse have been allowed to stay out of jail ahead of their trial.
Kristian and Angelina Khachaturyan, aged 19 and 18, were pictured at court in Moscow on Boxing Day for a bail hearing when the pair were told they will remain under house arrest while police gather evidence in their case.
Not pictured in court, but also freed under house arrest, was third sister Maria Khachaturyan, 17.
Together, the trio are accused of stabbing 57-year-old father Mikhail Kachturyan to death in a frenzied knife attack inside their apartment block back in July.
The sisters have admitted killing Mikhail, according to Russian police, but claim he drove them to it after years of torture and abuse.
Angelina Khachaturyan, 18 (left), and sister Kristian, 19 (right), appeared in court on Monday for a bail hearing. They are being kept under house arrest accused of murdering their father
Kristian (right) and Angelina (left) have admitted stabbing father Mikhail Kachturyan, 57, multiple times back in July, but say he forced them to it after years of abuse
Maria Khachaturyan, 17, is also accused of murder and was freed on bail until March
The court appearance marks the first time that Kristian and Angelina have seen each other since September, when they were freed from jail but ordered to remain at separate houses and not speak to one-another.
They have been under arrest since August.
During the hearing, a judge defied demands from the state prosecutor and some relatives of their dead father that they should return to custody.
‘They were not handcuffed or under convoy and walked in the courtroom on their own,’ reported Komsomolskaya Pravda.
‘All the three of them look significantly better, their faces are more peaceful.’
The past two months since they were freed from detention jail were ‘the happiest off their lives’ because each has spent time with their mother, even though the sisters are forced to live separately from one another and not communicate.
Their mother had earlier left her ‘abusive’ husband.
The three remain ‘banned from communicating with each other’ or other witnesses, said lawyer Aleksei Liptser.
‘They are forbidden from using internet and must be home 9pm to 7am. All the three of them wear electronic tags to track their position.
‘After today’s hearing all the same bans remained in place. This is what the investigation asked for and the court approved. The girls went home.’
The sisters are undergoing regular and ‘very tough’ interrogations over their father’s alleged cruelty, he said.
Another defence lawyer Aleksei Parshin said: ‘This is one of the hardest cases in my experience in terms of morals.’
The court ordered that Kristina should live with an aunt, Angelina with a grandmother, and Maria with her mother, Aurelia Dunduk, 38.
‘My biggest wish is for all this to be over, to forget about it, to start a new life,’ said the mother.
‘I am happy that there is still time to spend with the girls, to be close to them.’
The investigation was extended for another three months by today’s court hearing.
Mikhail’s body was found with ‘dozens’ of stab wounds close to the lift in the family’s block of flats back in July.
Kristina told police: ‘We hated him and we wanted just one thing to happen – either that he disappeared or that we never knew him. We wanted him just to go away and never come back.’
Mikhail Khachaturyan (pictured) was found dead with ‘dozens’ of stab wounds close to the lift in the family’s block of flats
Three teenage sisters, including Kristina Khachaturyan (pictured), 19, have been charged with murder over claims they stabbed their sexually abusive mafia boss father to death
Kristina Khachaturyan, 19, and her sisters Angelina (pictured), 18 and Maria, 17, have been detained in Moscow, amid reports of abuse they allegedly suffered at the hands of their ‘tyrannical’ father Mikhail
The sisters alleged that on the day of the attack he had threatened them with a knife in their flat near the Altufievskoe highway in Moscow.
One of the sisters had grabbed the knife and stabbed him, and the others joined in the attack, say reports.
The man tried to escape the flat but was attacked more and died near the elevator.
Friends and neighbours claimed the father was tyrannical and that his wife – the sisters’ mother – left him because of his abuse, while a son, now a student at Moscow University, had been ‘thrown out’ of the home by the father.
One family friend said she knew that at least one girl had been ‘sexually abused’.
She said: ‘He was always beating them. Once he took them to a forest and threatened to kill them.
‘The mother ran away from him, he banned all communication with her. The father was linked to the criminal world, he was a kind of mafia boss.
‘He never worked, and just received some payments on his credit card.’
Online news channel 112 reported it had evidence that one of the sisters told in correspondence how Khachaturyan forced her to perform sex acts on him.
‘The sister tried to commit suicide. After the sexual attack, she took a lot of pills but was rescued by doctors. The father persuaded the medics that it was not a suicide attempt but just a mistake.’
Online news outlet Mash cited an anonymous friend saying he was ‘constantly seducing’ his daughters.
The friend said: ‘Would you have done in a different way if you were in their shoes?
‘When all your life is a long nightmare, full of constant traumas, physical and mental.
‘The girls were all covered in bruises and scratches, but Mikhail was not a fool, he hit them in a way their bruises were hidden under the clothes. He was constantly seducing them.’
There was a recent incident when their brother Sergey had brought a male friend when he visited the sisters. The father became convinced his daughters had had sex with the friend.
He ranted at them: ‘So you did it all together with him, all three of you?’
He was reportedly recorded on audio tape threatening his daughters with sickening abuse. At one point, he says: ‘All of you are whores, and you will die as whores.’
One of the sisters had grabbed the knife and stabbed him, and the others joined in the attack, say reports. Pictured is one of the man’s daughters, Maria
Friends and neighbours claimed the father was tyrannical and that his wife – the sisters’ mother – left him because of his abuse, while a son, now a student at Moscow University, had been ‘thrown out’ of the home by the father. Angelina Khachaturyan is pictured
Mikhail Khachaturyan (left) tried to escape the flat but was attacked more and died near the elevator
Of the killing, the friend said: ‘I think it was self-defence. They would have never done it to him if not what he had been doing to them.
‘Each of them thought about her sisters in the first place, not about herself, all of them had the same problems, all suffered in the same way.’
He often forbade them going to school, it was claimed.
Elena, a family friend, said: ‘Once the father found the dog hair on the carpet. He called one of the daughters, made her brush the dog and eat its hair, while he watched.’
He put an online camera in the apartment to snoop on his daughters when he was away, it was reported.
Another friend named Anna said: ‘The girls were afraid of their father. Their mother just ran away from him. He did not allow them to go out. They were so happy when he left on a trip somewhere.
‘I know they would not have attacked anybody without reason. It means that the father was a threat to their lives.’
Another friend reported: ‘The man was always hiding his real character, he wanted to look like a holy person. His son left the home because he could not bear it.
Reports citing police say the sisters all confessed to jointly killing their father, claiming they suffered years of appalling abuse from a man who was allegedly a heroin addict. Angelina Khachaturyan is pictured
If convicted, the three sisters, including Kristina Khachaturyan (pictured) could be jailed for between ten and 15 years
Mikhail Khachaturyan (pictured) was reportedly recorded on audio tape threatening his daughters with sickening abuse
‘When the father was away, he came to see his sisters. Recently he came to visit them with his friend, and at that moment his aunt visited too and reported to the father that sisters were secretly seeing the brother.
‘Their mother just could not live with such a man too. Before he was not aggressive to children but then all changed.
‘The mother started a new life, she secretly stayed in touch with her children but they did not tell her about their troubles, they wanted her to live a happy life.
‘All the girls are very kind-hearted and generous, they would always help you.’
Sergei, their brother, reported to be 21, was quoted by REN television saying: ‘My sisters just could not have done it.
‘I don’t know what happened. ‘I don’t know who to believe. I have not lived there since I was 16. He forced our mother to leave too but I do not know what for.’
In the dead man’s Audi Q7 car police reportedly found two kilograms of heroin along with his arsenal of a pneumatic riffle, a smooth bore rifle, three pneumatic handguns, a signal gun, and a gas gun.
State news agency TASS cited the Investigative Committee, in charge of probing serious crimes, in reporting the three sisters have been charged with murder leading to a maximum penalty of ten to 15 years in jail.
‘Investigators have accused three daughters in murdering their father at the North-East of Moscow,’ reported spokeswoman Yulia Ivanova.
‘During the interrogation, all the girls confessed their guilt and explained that they had hostile relations with their father due to the moral sufferings he had inflicted on them over a long period.’