Base jumpers acquitted of placing Ukrainian flag on Moscow skyscraper awarded $31,000
MOSCOW, September 16 (RAPSI, Yevgeniya Sokolova) – Moscow’s Tagansky District Court on Friday awarded over two million rubles (about $31,000) in compensation to four base jumpers acquitted of painting a star on a skyscraper in the center of Moscow with colors of Ukraine's flag, RAPSI reports from the courtroom.
The court ordered Russia’s Finance Ministry to pay 667,000 rubles ($10,230) to Anna Lepyoshkina, 414,000 rubles ($6,350) to Yevgenia Korotkova, 632,000 rubles ($9,700) to Alexander Pogrebov and 454,000 rubles ($6,700) to Aleksey Shirokozhukhov.
On August 20, 2014, a Ukrainian flag was spotted on the spire of a skyscraper on Kotelnicheskaya Embankment in the center of Moscow. The Soviet star on the spire was painted blue and yellow, the national colors of Ukraine.
The flag was taken down and the star was repainted.
According to investigators, Ukrainian roofer Pavel Ushevets (Grisha Mustang), who claimed responsibility for the action on his Facebook page, and Vladimir Podrezov from St. Petersburg painted the star, while four base jumpers parachuted from the roof to divert attention. Investigators claimed the goal of the action was to “destabilize Moscow and incite hatred.”
Base jumpers – Shirokozhukhov, Pogrebov, Korotkova and Lepyoshkina – with special climbing equipment were arrested in the aftermath of the incident, charged with hooliganism and placed under house arrest. The fifth suspect, Podrezov, was arrested a few days later. Unlike the other four suspects, he was put in detention.
The Tagansky District Court has acquitted base jumpers. However, roofer Podrezov was sentenced to 2 years and 3 months in prison. Later, the Moscow City Court changed Podrezov’s sentence to 2 years and 10 months of restriction of liberty and he was released from the courtroom.