Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Russian opposition leader sentenced to 5 years

KIROV, Russia — Alexei Navalny, a charismatic and creative Russian opposition leader who exposed high-level corruption and mocked the Kremlin, was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison for embezzlement Thursday, in a verdict that set off street protests and drew condemnation from the West.

Supporters called the harsh ruling an obvious attempt to shut down a foe of President Vladimir Putin and intimidate other opposition activists.

In a surprise move, prosecutors later asked that he be kept free pending appeal, possibly reflecting an attempt to soothe public anger and to lend legitimacy to a mayoral race expected to be won by a Kremlin-backed politician.

Navalny, a 37-year-old lawyer who rose to fame as an anti-corruption blogger before leading unprecedented protests that revealed the depths of anger against the Kremlin, was found guilty of heading a group that embezzled 16 million rubles, or about $500,000, worth of timber from a state-owned company in 2009.

Backers say he is innocent, calling the trial unfair and the evidence against him shoddy. The United States and European Union criticized the ruling, saying the case appeared to be politically motivated.

Navalny had expected the ruling and protests were planned even before it was handed down, setting up a potential confrontation with police, who routinely crack down harshly on unsanctioned rallies. By early evening, several hundred protesters gathered outside Red Square, shouting "Freedom!" amid thick police cordons. Police detained some of the demonstrators, but didn't immediately move to disperse the rally.

Russian opposition leader sentenced to 5 years 07/18/13 [Last modified: Thursday, July 18, 2013 11:14pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Associated Press.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Helicopter, small aircraft collide at Clearwater Air Park

    News

    CLEARWATER — Two people suffered minor injuries after a helicopter and a small aircraft collided late Saturday afternoon at Clearwater Air Park, 1000 N Hercules Ave.

    Clearwater Fire Department emergency personal douse a plane with fire retardant after the plane crashed into a helicopter at Clearwater Air Park 1000 N Hercules Ave. Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. According to Clearwater Fire two people sustained minor injuries. [Photo by Clearwater Fire Department]
  2. 4-year-old girl, man injured in Clearwater Beach boating crash

    Briefs

    A 4-year-old girl was airlifted with serious injuries after a personal watercraft she was riding on collided with a boat in the Intracoastal Waterway near Clearwater Beach just before 5 p.m. Saturday afternoon.

  3. Hernando Sheriff's Office identifies bank robber killed after chase, places 7 deputies on administrative leave

    Crime

    Authorities have identified a bank robbery suspect fatally shot by Hernando County sheriff's deputies after a wild chase Friday in which the fleeing suspect rammed several patrol cars in Brooksville.

    Scott Michael Chamberlain, 44, died after a deputy-involved shooting Friday. The Hernando County Sheriff's Office said that Chamberlaine attempted to rob a bank before taking deputies on a pursuit. (Florida Department of Corrections)
  4. No. 12 FSU, defense struggle in 27-21 loss to N.C. State

    College

    TALLAHASSEE — It's easy to blame No. 12 Florida State's 27-21 loss to North Carolina State on the injury to starting quarterback Deondre Francois or the three-week layoff because of Hurricane Irma.

    It would also be wrong.

    Florida State Seminoles wide receiver Nyqwan Murray (8) carries during the first quarter of the Florida State Seminoles game against the North Carolina State Wolfpack on September 23, 2017, at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee, Fla.  At the half, North Carolina State Wolfpack 17, Florida State Seminoles 10.
  5. Trump tells Warriors star Stephen Curry that White House visit is off

    Nba

    SOMERSET, N.J. — Stephen Curry and President Donald Trump agree on one thing: The Golden State star is not going to the White House anytime soon.

    Golden State Warriors' Stephen Curry poses for photos during NBA basketball team media day Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Oakland, Calif. [Associated Press]