A Latvian chess player allegedly posted pornographic photographs to top young feminine avid gamers, such a lot of them Russian and a number of other underage, in a decade-lengthy harassment marketing campaign, in keeping with an investigation through independent Russian media.
The claims have shone a gentle on what the mummy of 1 victim defined as a “poisonous setting” within the male-dominated game.
Fifteen ladies and women mentioned that they had been receiving the annoying programs, some of which integrated used condoms, for the reason that at least 2009.
Then Again, the scandal was stored beneath wraps for years till the suspect mailed a number of letters to the resort in Latvia where a few ladies players have been staying for an international match closing November. A police research was then opened.
Meduza, the Russian information website online, pronounced claims that Andrejs Strebkovs, a FORTY-year-vintage Latvian with the name of International Grasp, one rung under Grandmaster, used to be the sender of the packages. The Telegraph was unable to reach him for remark.
‘There are numerous loopy people around’
Valentina Gunina, the arena’s 9th most powerful feminine chess player, mentioned she gained her first letter to her chess school in her early 20s Credit Score: Salah Malkawi/Getty Images
One Among the ladies imagined to have received the vulgar letters is Valentina Gunina, recently ranked as the world’s ninth strongest feminine chess participant.
“there was a condom within. A used one. I had no concept any person else used to be getting them. i assumed it was once just me,” the 33-yr-vintage chess grandmaster advised The Telegraph as she recalled receiving her first letter mailed to her chess faculty in Moscow while she was once in her early 20s.
“There are a lot of loopy other people round.”
Such A Lot of the feminine avid gamers by no means mentioned the letters to somebody but their households. a few of the women have been many times targeted and won letters to their house cope with, Meduza mentioned.
Ms Gunina told The Telegraph that she most effective started being worried whilst she got a letter on the match in Latvia last year.
She said: “I by no means won any letters to my home address – only to my faculty, which made me feel protected. This time it induced me as it used to be me once more and plenty of more ladies.”
A former chess participant who noticed the letters at the event told The Telegraph: “This Is the stuff from books approximately maniacs. there is no other way of placing it”.
Fide, the global governing frame for chess, stated it took motion as quickly because it found out the letters.
It said: “We suggested it to the police in no time on behalf of the players, to minimise distractions to them. we will be able to ensure that the Latvian Police took it significantly and it is actively investigating.”
Girls in the sport face ‘toxic surroundings’
the mum of Bibisara Assaubayeva filed complaints about Andrejs Strebkovs to Russian police, but the investigation was once by no means formally opened
A Number Of other folks, together with the mother of 17-yr-old Bibisara Assaubayeva, the youngest lady to win the ladies’s Blitz International Championship, in advance filed proceedings with police in Russia, however the investigation was once by no means formally opened.
Many female avid gamers, together with Ms Gunina, pushed aside the harassment as the paintings of one “mentally risky man”. However, Liana Tanzharikova, the mum of Ms Assaubayeva, stated that the letters pointed to a poisonous setting for girls within the recreation.
The chess world has long been identified for being unwelcoming to girls, as explored in the Queen’s Gambit, the hit Netflix show which drew on real occasions.
A former chess player who requested to be unnamed told The Telegraph that many male gamers steadily don’t conceal their aversion for the few female avid gamers who compete at their degree.
She stated: “there’s a lot of prejudice coming from boys and men. they often need to sing their own praises their superiority.”
Buddies defined Mr Strebkovs as a talented player who was once a loner.