German court hands down prison sentence to pro-Kremlin TV pundit's nephew after he claimed in an interview that he fought with separatists in eastern Ukraine
A court in Munich has convicted Sergey Kiselyov (the nephew of pro-Kremlin TV pundit Dmitry Kiselyov) of undergoing military training in St. Petersburg in August 2014 and planning to join separatist combat operations in eastern Ukraine, and sentenced him to two years and three months in prison. Sergey Kiselyov was found guilty of threatening state security and illegally possessing weapons — crimes punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
According to the Russian television network RTVI, the judge in the case said the prosecution failed to prove definitively that Kiselyov underwent training to fight in Ukraine, though the photographic and video evidence suggests as much. Kiselyov admits that he was waiting to be sent to the Donbass, but he denies any paramilitary training. Kiselyov says he did eventually go to eastern Ukraine, but he insists that he never killed anyone. If German officials later decide to prosecute him for direct combat operations, the case would go to federal court.
The criminal case was launched in Germany after Sergey’s uncle, Russian TV star Dmitry Kiselyov, mentioned in an interview in 2016, that his nephew from Germany was fighting in eastern Ukraine. Police in Bulgaria arrested Sergey in 2018 at the request of the German government.