Russian skinheads to stand trial

The prosecutor's office of Novosibirsk's region, southern Siberia, sent Monday the files of a criminal case against a local skinhead grouping, to the regional court. The skinheads are accused of attacking people from the former Soviet Central Asian republics in Novosibirsk streets.

The teenagers usually attacked southerners near a local market late in the evening, and even stabbed one of the victims 18 times. Investigators have found out that the crimes were committed for ethnic reasons.

Law-enforcers detained a few criminals in November 2002 for an attack on a Tajik person. The teenagers then had beat the man and taken his belongings, advising the victim to leave the Novosibirsk region as soon as possible.

The search in the criminals' homes revealed some special literature, in particular, about Hitler's life and activity.

Under investigation are young men aged 17-21, led by a 20-year-old student of a local college. He is charged with organising an extremist grouping, and the others are accused as members of the grouping at issue. In addition, the skinheads are facing charges of enkindling inter-ethnic conflicts and humiliating national dignity.

This is the first time that such a case is to be considered in the Novosibirsk region.

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