Alexei Navalny, opposition activist, sentenced to 3.5 years

A court of Moscow found Alexei Navalny and his brother Oleg Navalny guilty on charges of embezzling money from cosmetics maker Yves Rocher. Opposition leader Alexei Navalny was thus sentenced to 3.5 years conditionally, whereas his brother Oleg Navalny was entenced  to 3.5 years in a penal colony.

Prosecutors were seeking ten years in a penal colony for Alexei Navalny considering the previously imposed sentence of five years on probation on the case of Kirovles. As for Oleg Navalny, prosecutors wanted to sentence him to ten years in a penal colony. 

Lawyer Vadim Kobzev confirmed that Alexei Navalny would remain under house arrest until the sentence came into force. Oleg Navalny will be placed in a detention center, where he will be kept "until the procedure of appeal." His further detention will depend on the judge's decision regarding the appeal, officials said.

Earlier, it was planned that the verdict would be announced on January 15 - the date, for which Russian and Ukrainian opposition activists had already planned to hold a Russian Maidan on Manezhnaya Square near the Moscow Kremlin. However, it was later specified that the date of sentencing had been changed from January 15, 2015 to December 30, 2014 as the judge had already written the sentence.


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