Russian Banker Killed By Poison

The president of one of Russia’s biggest banks and leader of a politically influential entrepreneurs’ group died from poisoning Friday in an apparent contract killing, associates said.

Ivan Kivelidi, 46, had been hospitalized Tuesday after falling into a coma. His secretary died with similar poisoning symptoms on Thursday.

Doctors determined that both were poisoned with salts which probably contained cadmium. Russian Television said the poison may have been put in their tea.

Murders of businessmen are far from rare as Russian mobsters fight to establish control over profitable banks and businesses.

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