Opposition activist Navalny sentenced to five years
Whistleblowing blogger turned opposition leader Alexei Navalny was charged with the theft of over 10,000 cubic meters of timber, which was allegedly stolen from Kirovles company between May and September 2009. The case was initially dropped, but was revived when an inquiry was launched by Investigative Committee Chairman Alexander Bastrykin.
The Leninsky District court in Kirov sentenced renowned opposition activist and Moscow mayoral hopeful Alexei Navalny to 5 years in prison for embezzlement.
According to investigators, while serving on a voluntary basis as an adviser to the Kirov region governor, Navalny organized the theft of over 10,000 cubic meters of timber. It was allegedly stolen from Kirovles company between May and September 2009 in collusion with Vyatka Timber Company Director Pyotr Ofitserov (photo).
The specific quote on political bias allegations: "Arguments that Navalny is being prosecuted on political motives are far-fetched."
Navalny's wife remained stoic during the sentecing. Her husband made no secret in the weeks leading up to the verdict of his confidence that he would be convicted.
Navalny was detained in the courtroom after the judge finished reading the verdict.
Navalny's "accomplice" Pyotr Ofitserov received a four-year sentence. His wife was in tears.
Alexei Navalny bids farewell to his wife and parents before being escorted out of the courtroom.