MOSCOW, January 31 - RAPSI, Maria Petrova. The Moscow City Court has sentenced Yury Solovyov to 18 years in prison on Thursday after the jury found him guilty of brutally murdering his two business partners in the United States 10 years ago, the court spokesperson told RAPSI.

Solovyov will serve time in a maximum-security prison and must also pay 1 million roubles ($33,000) in damages.

Earlier, Solovyov had confessed to theft, but pleaded not guilty to all of the other charges brought against him.

The investigators say Solovyov met his future business partners in spring 2001. The businessmen - a Russian and an Uzbek - jointly ran an employment agency.

Solovyev rented an apartment with the men in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. In June 2002, he decided to kill them and to steal their money, according to the Investigative Committee.

That same month, Solovyov purchased a Jennings pistol and shot dead his partners. He stole over $19,000 and their credit cards.

To conceal his crime, Solovyov dismembered their bodies in the bathroom, packed them into plastic bags, and threw them into a gully. Solovyov proceeded to buy jewelry with one of the stolen credit cards. He also stole $8,760 in cash and cigarettes from a gas station where he worked in 2004, and then left the United States.

In June 2004, he was placed on the international wanted list. He was found in Russia in 2009. All of the case files were transferred from the US Department of Justice to the Investigative Committee for Solovyov's prosecution.