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Putin’s spokesman promises ‘closer look’ at court ruling that adds 10 years to historian’s prison sentence

Source: Meduza

Vladimir Putin’s spokesman declined on Wednesday to comment on the Karelian Supreme Court’s damning ruling against historian and human rights activist Yuri Dmitriev, though the Kremlin vowed to “take a closer look” at the case. “We know there are media reports [about the new verdict], but honestly this issue is outside our control. I don’t think the president knows about it,” Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov told journalists.

On Tuesday, ruling on an appeal filed against Yuri Dmtriev’s July 22 verdict, the Supreme Court in Russia’s Republic of Karelia added 9.5 years to the 64-year-old historian’s 3.5-year prison sentence, upholding his conviction for sexual assault against a minor. The high court also overturned Dmitriev’s rare acquittal on felony charges of producing child pornography, sexual abuse, and illegal firearm posession. He now faces a retrial, relitigating all three charges.

Viktor Anufriev, Yuri Dmitriev’s defense attorney, told Meduza that he intends to challenge the Karelian Supreme Court’s ruling.

Had the Petrozavodsk City Court’s July 22 ruling been allowed to stand, Dmitriev would have gone free in November 2020 because of time he has already served in pretrial detention.

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