MOSCOW, July 21 (RAPSI) - The trial at a district court in Bonn involving Sergei Maksimov, who stands charged with hacking into the email of Russian opposition activist Alexei Navalny and stealing personal data, has been extended until August 5, RIA Novosti reported Tuesday citing a spokesperson for the court.
Earlier, the hearings that began on June 24 were postponed until July 21 due to a new witness who had to arrive from Russia. The witness, Navalny’s secretary, described to the court how her employer’s email was allegedly hacked. Also on Tuesday, the court heard a testimony by a police officer who interviewed Maksimov earlier.
The court spokesperson said the hearings were postponed because prosecutors filed a motion to have Navalny’s written statement read in court while Maksimov’s lawyer announced that he would like to invite a technical expert to confirm whether the email hacking actually occurred.
As previously reported, Sergei Maksimov, 41, a German citizen, allegedly claimed to be Hacker Hell and presumably hacked about 100 emails, including the emails of opposition politician Alexei Navalny. After the hacker published Navalny’s correspondence with Kirov Region governor Nikita Belykh in the summer of 2012, Navalny was charged with various economic crimes.
Maksimov is facing a fine and a two-year prison term. The alleged hacker refused to testify and pled not guilty.
Navalny said on his blog that the Bonn prosecutor’s office opened the case against Maksimov after he and his supporters informed German law enforcement authorities about the hacking.
According to Navalny, German police searched Maksimov’s apartment in 2013, where they supposedly seized a computer and hard drives and other data storage devices that were signed “Hacker Hell” and contained Navalny’s emails.
However, the owner of a Twitter account that belongs to “Hacker Hell” has written that he and Maksimov are two different people. The account owner said he knew Maksimov, who allegedly told him in 2013 that he was being investigated by German police at Navalny’s request.
Alexei Navalny is a Russian political and public figure, leader of the Party of Progress. He ran for Moscow mayor and is the author of one of the most popular political blogs that was banned for promoting unauthorized public protests. He has already been given two suspended sentences for embezzlement – five years in the Kirovles case and 3.5 years in the recent Yves Rocher Vostok case.