A DAD who allegedly killed his 'paedophile' friend after he accused him of raping his eight-year-old daughter has had his legal fees crowdfunded.
Villagers rallied around to raise money to help Vyachelav M hire a lawyer after he was charged over the murder of his pal Oleg Sviridov, 32 in Russia.
Horrified Vyachelav, 34, claimed to have found video evidence his former friend was a paedophile and had sexually assaulted his daughter and other children.
Locals also started a petition to demand the rocket engine factory worker, should be acquitted and spared jail after admitting to the killing.
Vyacheslav M is now under house arrest, but legal experts say he is still likely to face jail even though his own daughter, nine, was an alleged victim.
The pair were drinking when Vyacheslav checked the video his friend had been secretly watching on his smartphone.
“We have collected the money, thank you all,” said Vyachelsav's father, after the fund-raiser to pay for a top lawyer.
“It was not friends or relatives who helped, but strangers from the village.”
The petition reads: “Sviridov fell asleep, and Vyacheslav took his mobile phone and decided to see what his friend was looking at."
Every father would have done this. This will be an example to everyone.
He explained that Vyachelsav saw footage of his daughter being abused.
“Every father would have done this. This will be an example to everyone.
“Therefore, we demand understanding from the executive branch, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Investigative Committee.”
He should be fully acquitted, demands the petition signed by 1,100 locals in Samara region.
Yet investigators now believe that Vyacheslav’s original story that he killed Sviridov a week after the “sex attacker” had gone on the run is not true.
They have concluded he stabbed the “paedophile” to death moments after seeing the footage involving his daughter, then hid the body in the forest.
Vyacheslav went to police to report the sex abuse but told them Sviridov had run away.
A massive manhunt began and a week later Vyacheslav claimed he had only just found the “paedophile” and killed him during a fight in the forest near Vintai village in Russia.
In fact, he died a week earlier, detectives believe.
Legal expert Dmitry Palatov said a term of imprisonment was likely despite demands from locals, reported Izvestia.
But villagers are reported to be “united” in wanting him acquitted.
“He saved our kids from potential paedophile abuse,” said one.
Villager in Pribrezhnoye, where Vyachelsav lives, Tatiana Zubova, said: “I know him personally, he is a good father and husband.”
Lawyer Vera Podkolzina said proving Sviridov’s guilt from video evidence was critical to a lenient sentence for Vyacheslav.
“It is difficult to say what punishment the father of the girl may face, but he has very powerful mitigating circumstances,” she said.
MP Oksana Pushkina called for harsher legal sanctions to deter child sex abuse.
“We need tough legislative measures against paedophiles,” she said.
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