5th Chechen militant to be tried by jury

Khusei Aziyev, one of the five militants extradited from Georgia to Russia, will be tried separately in the Stavropol district court on Monday.

According to the court spokesmen, on the insistence of the Khusei Aziyev and his lawyer, his case has been filed separately.

Aziyev, like the rest of the those extradited - Rizvan Vasitov, Aslan Adayev, Abdul-Vakhab Shamayev and Khusein Khadzhiyev - on trial in the Stavropol region, is facing charges of terrorism, border regime violation, arms smuggling, attempted murder of law-enforcers and involvement in bandit activities. The other four are being tried by the chairing judge and two assessors.

The five men were members of a Chechen gang that fought against federal counter-terrorist forces.

Last summer, the group moved from Georgia, in the upper reaches of the Kerigo gorge, to the Chechen section of the Russo-Georgian border. The armed clash left eight border guards dead and seven wounded.

The gang suffered huge losses and was defeated but a few militants, including the five on trial, escaped to Georgian territory and were later extradited to Russia on Moscow's insistence.

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