Russia: Family and friends of male rape beer bottle murder victim say he wasn’t gay

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The parents of a man who was killed and raped with beer bottles in Russia say the victim was not gay.

The body of Vladislav Tornovoi, 23, was found dumped in a courtyard in the city of Volgograd on Friday 10 May.

A suspect told police Mr Tornovoi had been killed because he was gay.

Natalia Kunitskaya, a spokeswoman for the Volgograd region branch of the Investigative Committee, announced at the weekend that the incident was being treated as a potential hate crime.

However, family and friends of Mr Tornovoi have dismissed reports about his sexuality.

Igor Kekshin, a friend of the dead man, told the BBC the victim had been drinking with men he had grown up with in Volgograd when they fell out.

Mr Kekshin said Mr Tornovoi had never shown any interest in gay men and had mixed with a lot of girls.

Investigators in Volgograd said: “We have no information about him belonging to this cast of people or not.

“A lot of media are writing about this and the parents of this lad are going about complaining.” According to the investigators, the victim’s parents said their son was not gay.

Two men aged 22 and 27, who were reportedly Mr Tornovoi’s friends, have been arrested on suspicion of killing him.