An observer who witnessed electoral violations in a Moscow-region local election was hospitalized with a ruptured spleen after being attacked by a group of men late last week, a news report said.

Stanislav Pozdnyakov was monitoring an election last weekend in the Moscow region city of Balashikha when he witnessed ballet-box stuffing, the Russian website OVD Info reported

A group of eight men later arrived in a BMW with no license plates and severely beat him and another man Dmitry Nesterov, OVD reported, citing Pozdnyakov’s friend Dmitry Georgiyevsky.

Pozdnyakov initially reported the incident to police, but noticed bleeding a few days later and was taken to Moscow’s Sklifosovsky hospital where he he had his spleen removed, the report said.

The violence shows just how tightly dictator Vladimir Putin controls the country. While he is supposed to be elected the violence shows that Russian election are anything by free or fair. Mr Putin is known for using armed gangs, biker and even child soldiers to influence political outcomes in his favor.

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