Fact Check

Russian Star Has Testicles Stolen

Rumor: A Russian actor was drugged and his testicles stolen by an attractive stranger.

Published Feb 26, 2015

Claim:   A Russian man was drugged and his testicles stolen by an attractive stranger.


Example:   [Collected via e-mail, February 2015]

There appears to be a new version of the kidney robbery article
going around.

Now the Daily Mail in the UK has just published an article about a famous
Russian actor (but not showing his face, but showing his name) being
drugged and having his testicles stolen:


Origins:   On 26 February 2015, the British newspaper the Daily Mail published an article titled "Married TV actor wakes up to find his testicles have been STOLEN after he is drugged in Russian bar by attractive blonde working for organ traffickers." As the example quoted above observed, the article bore many hallmarks of long-circulating urban legends involving organ theft (often as the result

of an illicit or otherwise immoral sexual encounter).

According to the article, 30-year-old married Russian celebrity Dmitry Nikolaev met a blonde stranger in a bar in Moscow. After he (presumably) pursued an extramarital encounter with the woman, he awoke to unexplained and severe pain in the area of his groin and was later informed by doctors that his testicles had been removed (without his knowledge or consent). Moreover, the site claimed, the surgical procedure was performed by a skilled individual and likely resulted from a larger organized crime outfit trafficking in human organs.

Neither the Daily Mail nor the Russian news source to which it referred provided any date, specific location, or other verifiable details of the alleged crime. The narrative stated that the man was transported to a hospital and only learned after an examination that his testicles had been removed, which does not sound particularly likely given even a layperson's ability to detect whether or not he currently possesses testes. It's possible that the news source intended to imply the man's testicles were replaced with prosthetics, but the nature of his injury was not detailed:

They kissed and had some more beer and after that the actor remembers nothing,' said a police source.

He woke up next day at a bus stop, feeling acute pain, and with blood on his trousers.

Rushed to hospital, he was told that his testicles had been removed and that 'it was done like proper surgery by someone with a medical education'.

The operation was conducted in a 'skillful way', said police, who believe his beer was spiked by an unknown drug.

As discussed elsewhere on this site, the usefulness of such a donation (willing or not) is debatable. It's highly unlikely a crime such as the one described truly constitutes a profit center for gangs in any country, as testicles are neither a commonly purchased medical commodity nor a commonly transplanted organ, and organs of any description are delicate and difficult to transport.

Finally, the manner in which the site partially obscured the purported victim's identity was atypical and suspicious. While the man's face was pixelated, his full name, age, and general location were utilized by the Russian news outlet from which the Daily Mail sourced the story. The translated article from which the claims arose concluded with a claim that the man's wife remained ignorant of his experience, which is rather implausible given that his full name and other identifying details were released by the media:

Interestingly, the wife of the injured man is still convinced that her husband was in the hospital because of surgery on the genitals caused by a serious illness.

Last updated:   26 February 2015

David Mikkelson founded the site now known as snopes.com back in 1994.

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