The Nightwolves: Putin’s Bikers

At the end of April around 1000 ’Night Wolves’ and the biker clubs supporters met in Moscow to celebrate the start of the motorcycle season. They paraded through the capital, put on bike shows and put on concerts.

The largest motorcycle club in Russia has around 5000 members who are organised into 50 local chapters. They are considered ultra nationalist, ultra conservative and completely loyal to the Kremlin. Club boss Alexander Saldostanow, known as ’Surgeon’, is a close personal friend of President Putin. The group has received medals of honour for their work in the patriotic education of Russian youth. However others claim the Night Wolves are a paramilitary organisation and say they have significantly interfered in the Ukraine conflict.

Our film crew obtained an exclusive interview with the club President about their radical political views and the role of the Night Wolves in the Crimea and Eastern Ukraine. We also speak to human rights activists and politicians about the organisation and investigate the group’s controversial trip to Berlin to commemorate the Red Army in WWII. An exclusive look inside the group.


  • Year: 2015
  • Duration: 44 mins
  • Production: NTV
  • Director:
  • Available Versions: ENG, GER
  • Country of production: Germany

Related Programs

The Balkans: Putin’s Wolves

As the wider geopolitical struggle between Russia and the West intensifies, support from the Kremlin has emboldened Bosnia’s Serb separatists.

More info

Inside the Russian Info War Machine

Acclaimed journalist Paul Moreira investigates how Russia manipulates public opinion, undermines democratic governments and attempts to alter world events.

More info

Nationalism and Tradition: Russia According to Putin

In the eyes of many, Vladimir Putin has restored Russia’s pride and made it a great superpower again. We explore how he has returned to tradition.

More info