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18 May


Alexey Navalny got a real sentence

The politician violated the conditions of the probationary period by not reporting to the inspection of the FSIN department

Photo: mos-gorsud.ru

/NOVOSTIVL/ On Tuesday, the Simonovsky District Court of Moscow granted the request of the Federal Penitentiary Service (FSIN) and replaced the 3.5 years suspended sentence imposed on opposition leader Alexei Navalny in the case of embezzlement of funds from Yves Rocher for 2 years 8 months of real imprisonment. According to the Federal Penitentiary Service, the politician violated the conditions of the probationary period by not reporting to the department's inspection. Mr Navalny called the charges fabricated and the court politically motivated. Experts disagree both in their assessments of the validity of the verdict and in their opinions about its impact on the political situation in Russia.

The day before the meeting, the press service of the Simonovsky court announced the transfer of the process to the building of the Moscow City Court. This was already the second mobile trial of Alexei Navalny: the first was held on January 18 at the Khimki police station, where the judge of the Khimki City Court decided the issue of the politician's detention. At that time, the court explained the postponement of the meeting by the absence of the detainee's test results for coronavirus, and now - by the inability to accommodate journalists in a small district court.

The strangeness with the trial did not end there: shortly before the hearing, judge Yulia Okuneva was replaced by Natalia Repnikova. On January 12, The Insider published an investigation that the relatives of Yulia Okuneva make money on government contracts with the Federal Penitentiary Service and the FSB, so the judge may have a conflict of interest.

The politician's lawyers Vadim Kobzev and Olga Mikhailova petitioned to attach the ECHR decision in the Yves Rocher case and the Supreme Court's decision to re-examine the case due to new circumstances (it was later canceled by the Presidium of the Supreme Court). The lawyers also asked to attach a notification sent by Mr. Navalny to the Federal Penitentiary Service on January 9, 2020 about the impossibility to come to the inspection and a final certificate-extract from the Berlin clinic "Charite", where it was noted that the patient completed the rehabilitation course on January 15, 2021.

Mr. Navalny was going to hand over this document to the inspection after his return to Russia. In addition, even before the trial, a notification was attached to the materials, which Mr. Navalny sent to the Federal Penitentiary Service on December 7, 2020 from a German hotel where he lived during physiotherapy after being discharged from the Charite. In it, Alexei Navalny informs that he is undergoing treatment and promises to come to the inspection as soon as he appears in Moscow.

All documents were attached, although representatives of the FSIN and the prosecutor's office objected to some of the certificates. They noted that the statement on the impossibility of appearing on January 9 came to the FSIN on Thursday, although the oppositionist was supposed to be registered on Mondays.