Wagner chief tells prisoners not to ‘rape women’ after releasing them in exchange for fighting in Ukraine

Putin’s Wagner mercenary boss has released the first batch of Russian prisoners pardoned after fighting in Ukraine.

The prisoners were recruited last year by Yevgeny Prigozhin, who offered them freedom from Russia’s infernal prisons in exchange for participating in the country’s failed invasion of Ukraine.

Having survived Putin’s meat grinder war for six months, the prisoners have now been released, while Prigozhin says the ragtag group of convicts “should be treated with the deepest respect by society.”

But he also told them: ‘Don’t drink too much, don’t do drugs, don’t rape women, don’t invent bad things’.

It marks the beginning of convicted murderers, rapists and robbers being allowed back onto Russian streets, their sentences wiped out.

The boss of Putin's Wagner mercenaries has released the first batch of Russian prisoners pardoned after fighting in Ukraine - and gave them bizarre advice 'Don't rape women, don't drink too much and don't make bad things'

The boss of Putin’s Wagner mercenaries has released the first batch of Russian prisoners pardoned after fighting in Ukraine – and gave them bizarre advice ‘Don’t rape women, don’t drink too much and don’t make bad things’

The prisoners were recruited last year by Yevgeny Prigozhin, who offered them freedom from Russia's infernal prisons in exchange for participating in the country's failed invasion of Ukraine.

The prisoners were recruited last year by Yevgeny Prigozhin, who offered them freedom from Russia's infernal prisons in exchange for participating in the country's failed invasion of Ukraine.

The prisoners were recruited last year by Yevgeny Prigozhin, who offered them freedom from Russia’s infernal prisons in exchange for participating in the country’s failed invasion of Ukraine.

Having survived six months of Putin’s meat grinder war, the prisoners have now been released and Prigozhin said the ragtag group of convicts “should be treated with the deepest respect by society.”

Some men have chosen to continue fighting for Wagner’s private army, which they joined after being freed from Russia’s infernal prisons to take part in the war in Ukraine.

Prigozhin, known as “Putin’s Chef,” was seen in a video talking to a group of men – some of whom were injured – whose faces were blurred.

“You worked through your contract. You worked with honor and dignity,” Prigozhin said in the video published by the Russian news agency Ria Novosti.

Prigozhin said the men “should be treated with the deepest respect by society” after completing the six-month contracts they had been offered to gain freedom.

Some immediately told him they would return to war, and he praised them as “born warriors.”

Others – including vicious convicted murderers – may return to society, fearing they will return to a life of crime.

Prigozhin’s plan – a Putin fixer who is now quickly turning into a major populist political and military figure in Russia – has led to the release of tens of thousands of prisoners from prison.

Prigozhin (pictured laying flowers on a grave) praised the fighters for their sense of duty to the Motherland

Prigozhin (pictured laying flowers on a grave) praised the fighters for their sense of duty to the Motherland

Prigozhin (pictured laying flowers on a grave) praised the fighters for their sense of duty to the Motherland

The men are formally pardoned by Putin, as president.

Prigozhin said of the ex-convicts who survived six months at the front: “It is necessary to understand that they are fully capable members of society.”

He praised the fighters for their sense of duty to the motherland.

“This is what a calling is… don’t fear the enemy, look him in the eye and don’t look away,” he said.

Yet thousands of those released to fight have been killed or maimed.

Prigozhin is depicted in a morgue with the corpses of his fighters.

Critics in Russia say many convicts were heavily armed to join Putin’s war in a human rights abuse — then used as cannon fodder.

Prigozhin told critics that if prisoners did not fight, their own sons would be called to war.

Prigozhin was also filmed with wounded fighters being sent home saying to him, “We want to thank you for giving us the chance to start a new life, to become a human being from scratch.

“Thanks for the big and strong family [of ex-convicts fighting in the war]. We understand what friendship is.

“We have a lot of respect for you…

“We want to continue fighting and protect our motherland…”

Prigozhin said to them, “You have already become human beings.

‘You were human beings. Life just waved – and waved back….”

Among Wagner’s ex-convicts killed was Vadim Medvedev, 23, imprisoned for robbery and drug offenses.

The convicts have been formally pardoned by Putin as president (pictured on January 4)

The convicts have been formally pardoned by Putin as president (pictured on January 4)

The convicts have been formally pardoned by Putin as president (pictured on January 4)

Pedestrians look at the destroyed Russian military vehicles at an open-air exhibition of destroyed Russian equipment in Kiev on January 5

Pedestrians look at the destroyed Russian military vehicles at an open-air exhibition of destroyed Russian equipment in Kiev on January 5

Pedestrians look at the destroyed Russian military vehicles at an open-air exhibition of destroyed Russian equipment in Kiev on January 5

Drug trafficker Dmitry Chuikin, 47, was murdered in Ukraine when he tried to earn his freedom by staying alive for six months.

Another convict Vadim Grigoriev – whose crimes were not revealed – was posthumously awarded the Order of Courage.

Wagner fighters have been at the forefront of Moscow’s offensive in Ukraine.

The group’s presence has also been reported in conflict zones, including Syria, Libya, Mali and the Central African Republic.

In September, video surfaced of a bald man who closely resembles Prigozhin in a prison yard offering contracts to inmates to fight in Ukraine on horrifying terms.

“If you arrive in Ukraine and decide it’s not for you, we’ll consider it desertion and shoot you. Any questions, boys?’ said the man.

“Nobody gives themselves up,” he said, adding that recruits should carry grenades in case of arrest. “When you die, your body will be repatriated to the place you wrote down on the form.”

It was not possible to verify whether the man in the video was Prigozhin, but his company Concord did not deny that it was him.

“Of course, if I were a prisoner, I would dream of joining this friendly team in order not only to pay my debt to the Motherland, but to repay it with interest,” Concord quoted him as saying.

.