The death of Russian exile Nikolai Glushkov in his London home last week has moved from "unexplained" to a full-fledged murder investigation, according to the Metropolitan police.
Glushkov is determined to have died from compression to the neck, suggesting either manual or ligature strangulation.
The businessman is the second Russian to suffer an attack in the U.K. within the past two weeks.
The Metropolitan police’s counter-terrorism command is retaining its lead role in the investigation “because of the associations Mr Glushkov is believed to have had” but has cautioned that there was no suggestion of a link with the attempted murders of the Russian former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Yulia, in Salisbury almost two weeks ago.
Glushkov was in the midst of a legal battle at the time of his death: He was tried in absentia by a Russian court in 2017 and sentenced to eight years in prison for allegedly stealing $123 million from Russian airline Aeroflot.
The case was then brought to the U.K., where Glushkov was preparing to defend himself against fraud charges.
According to the Guardian, Glushkov was found dead in his home after failing to appear in court on last Monday.
The Met said: “Detectives are retaining an open mind and are appealing for any information that will assist the investigation.” Officers want to hear from anyone who may have seen or heard anything suspicious at or near his home in Clarence Avenue in New Malden between Sunday 11 March and Monday 12 March