A Ukrainian sailor on the Spanish island of Majorca was arrested over the weekend after he tried to sink his Russian boss’ yacht to carry out revenge against the Kremlin — now he plans to return to Ukraine to fight for his country.
What are the details?
Taras Ostapchuk, 55, allegedly caused severe damage to the oligarch’s $7.7 million luxury vessel on Saturday by opening up its valves causing it to partially sink, according to local Spanish outlet Ultima Hora and English language newspaper the Majorca Daily Bulletin.
The 156-foot yacht, called Lady Anastasia, is reportedly owned by Alexander Mijeev, a Russian arms dealer who formerly led the Russian Helicopter Corporation before taking over Rostec, a Russian state-owned weapons supplier.
To carry out his revenge plan, Ostapchuk opened a large valve in the engine room and a second in another compartment where the crew resides before instructing three other crew members, all of who are Ukrainians, to abandon the ship.
When police arrived, the defiant sailor reportedly told them: “My boss is a criminal who sells weapons that kill the Ukrainian people.”
The unrepentant mechanical engineer later told a judge, “I don’t regret anything I’ve done and I would do it again.”
Ostapchuk reportedly decided to sink the ship after watching a video of Russian forces attacking an apartment building in Ukraine, killing or injuring civilians, and that he only intended to inflict material damage.
He recalled that he lived “in a very similar building” as the one Russian forces targeted. “From my window I see the parliament of Ukraine. I wondered what would happen to my house, because it is located in a similar position.”
Incensed by Russian President Vladimir Putin’s full-scale invasion, Ostapchuk now plans to return to Ukraine to defend his homeland.
In an interview following his release, the engineer told Ultima Hora, “As soon as I reach the first city in Ukraine, I will find a military commander and ask him if they need me.”
“I said to myself: Why do I need a job if I don’t have my country?” he continued. “Yes, it’s true, I had a good job as chief mechanic on the ship and a good salary, but I’m going to fight for my country. I’ve lost my job, but that’s not a problem. I will not lose my country.”
Reflecting on his partially failed attempt to sink the Lady Anastasia, he said, “I lost the first battle, which was to sink the Russian chief’s ship, but I will win the next one.”
Ukrainian sailor sinks Russian boss’s $7.7 million luxury superyacht | New York Post