ST. PETERSBURG, March 29 (RAPSI, Mikhail Telekhov) – A court in St. Petersburg has sentenced a citizen of Tajikistan Farkhod Nazarov to 15 years in prison for recruiting new members to the Islamic State terrorist organization banned in Russia, his defense lawyer Alexander Krasnikov has told RAPSI.

A prosecutor earlier demanded 16 years in prison for the alleged Islamic State cell leader Nazarov.

Nazarov was charged with recruiting persons from former Soviet republics for terrorist activity in Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq as well as terrorism in Russia and cannabis sale. The defendant pleaded not guilty to abetting terrorism.

According to the case documents, Nazarov justified and propagated ideas of radical Islam. Investigators believe that he communicated with a girl, who adopted Islam, and proposed her to leave for a conflict zone or fighting the “infidels” in Russia.

In October, Nazarov was arrested in the Leningrad Region. During the searches, the law enforcement officers recovered the Islamic literature, pneumatic gun, knife, drugs, computer and communication equipment.

The Islamic State, an organization which is prohibited in Russia, is currently one of the major threats to global security. Over three years, these terrorists have managed to seize large areas of Iraq and Syria. Currently, various forces combat the organization in both countries.