Mikhail Sergeevich Kedrov
Mikhail Kedrov (1878, Moscow – 1941) was a Soviet communist politician and secret policeman. He joined the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party in 1901, and sided with the Bolsheviks when the party was divided. After the October Revolution, he became member of the Collegium of the People's Commissariat for War, and Military Commissar for Demobilisation. In May 1918 he was sent to the North to organise defence. In March 1919 he became a member of the Collegium of the All-Russia Extraordinary Commission (Cheka), the Soviet secret police.
Kedrov was reportedly extremely cruel and barbaric, even by the standards of the Red Terror. Donald Rayfield wrote that Kedrov "slaughter[ed] schoolchildren and Army officers in northern Russia with such ruthlessness that he had to be taken into psychiatric care." Kedrov reportedly executed captured White Russian officers by loading them onto barges and sinking them. He was ultimately relieved of his post after preparing to massacre the population of Vologda. Kedrov, who had a family history of mental illness, was temporarily confined to a psychiatric institution before being released and reassigned to lead a Cheka detachment near the Caspian Sea.
Kedrov and his son Igor had complained repeatedly to Joseph Stalin about Lavrenti Beria, who increasingly came to control the Soviet secret police in the 1930s. After Beria's appointment as head of the NKVD in 1938, Kedrov, like many former secret police agents, was arrested and executed at Beria's direction.