Shabtai Kalmanovich, a major basketball fan and a notorious persona in Israel and Russia was murdered yesterday in Moscow center, inside his luxurious Mercedes, just meters away from Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's office.
Kalmanovich was born in Kaunas, Lithuania in 1947 but later on migrated to Israel, partly motivated by his Jewish roots, to study. After the end of his studies he became a businessman, organising various shows and concerts. In 1986 he was arrested accused of spying Israel on the behalf of the Soviet Union.
After the fall of Soviet Union and the establishment of free market economy, Kalamovich migrated to Russia and became an important businessman in Moscow. His love for basketball led him to get involved in the sport and he sponsored various clubs that made history in the European cups, like Zalgiris, women's Spartak Moscow and Russian women NT which all won major tournaments and medals.