RUSSIAN police have launched a manhunt for a groom suspected of axing his fiancée to death days before their wedding.
The semi-naked body of Marina Pankratova, 26, was found in bed with horrific face and head wounds.
The groom, Alexander Voronin, 28, nephew of an FSB security service lieutenant-colonel, has gone on the run, according to reports citing law enforcement.
The couple were due to wed in early August, and she recently bought a wedding dress.
Voronin was seen leaving his flat with a backpack on Sunday, and a murder hunt has been launched.
He was “silent and reticent”, said a neighbour who saw him.
The bride’s face was disfigured and her skull fractured from wounds caused by a small axe.
Her body, covered in bruises, was found by Voronin’s mother.
A pistol was also discovered at the scene.
Relatives say the couple had dated a long time after meeting at a store where they both worked.
Friends said they had a “very tender” relationship, but it was recently revealed Marina had reported domestic violence to police before withdrawing the claims and agreeing to the marriage.
“They were a nice couple. very calm and quiet,” said one neighbour.
A female neighbour said: “I’m shocked. They were a nice and intelligent couple.”
Police confirmed Voronin – who had two young children from previous relationships – is the main suspect and a search is underway.