A LEADING Russian military historian has confessed to murdering his lover after he was dragged from a freezing river carrying two severed women’s arms in a backpack.
A decapitated head and body along with a saw covered in blood were later found at professor Oleg Sokolov’s flat in St Petersburg, Russia.
Anastasia Yeschenko, aged 24, was a student of the professor, reported 112 crime news channel.
She had been in a relationship with the historian, 63, when he “accidentally killed her” following an argument, according to the report which stated he had confessed to police.
Earlier reports had said the victim was a relative.
Sokolov’s lawyer Alexander Pochuyev told AFP: “He has admitted his guilt.”
He added that the defendant regretted what he had done and was now cooperating.
The academic is in detention in hospital suffering from hypothermia, according to multiple reports.
Sokolov was dragged from the icy Moyka River in St Petersburg in the early hours of Saturday morning after he fell into the river trying to dispose of her body while drunk.
In his backpack were two female arms severed at the elbow and a gun.
The gruesome corpse and severed head were found at his nearby apartment on Moyka Embankment, say reports.
Sokolov reportedly told police he killed his lover during an argument before sawing off her head, arms and legs.
He is then said to have planned to get rid of the body before publicly taking his own life dressed as Napoleon.
Sokolov is considered a leading Russian expert on the Napoleonic Wars.
He is well known for reenacting moments of Napoleonic history.
MOST READ IN WORLD NEWS
He is a professor at St Petersburg State University, which was attended in the Soviet era by Vladimir Putin.
Sokolov was president of the Russian Association of Military History and is now a member of the body’s scientific council.
He has worked as a technical adviser to European television broadcasters on films depicting the Napoleonic era, and he was made a knight of the Legion of Honour in France in 2003.