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Leading Russian soccer figure murdered

June 16, 1997

MOSCOW (AP) _ One of the most prominent women executives in the male-dominated Russian soccer world has been fatally shot at her country home outside Moscow.

Larisa Nechayeva, director-general of the Spartak soccer club, widely regarded as the country’s most popular team, was shot in the head and the chest Sunday night at her home east of Moscow, club spokesman Alexander Lvov said Monday.

The spokesman declined to speculate on the possible motives for the killing, saying Nechayeva had not received any threats and was not involved in any business conflicts.

The Interfax news agency quoted police as saying they were able to identify the attackers _ a report Lvov denied.

No arrests have been made and no other details were immediately available.

As Spartak’s director-general, Nechayeva was one of the most prominent women in Russian soccer. She reported to club President Oleg Romantsev.

Sports organizations have increasingly become a target for the Russian underworld, which seeks a cut of their revenues.

In April, Valentin Sych, president of Russia’s Ice Hockey Federation, was shot and killed at his country house outside Moscow in an apparent contract killing. Like most such murders, the crime has not been solved.

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