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Russia sentences 72-year-old woman to 5.5 years in prison for sharing two social media posts

Source: Meduza

A court in Russia’s Rostov region has sentenced a 72-year-old woman to 5.5 years in prison for allegedly spreading “disinformation” about the Russian army, according to the legal aid group Net Freedoms Project.

The Russian authorities launched the case against Yevgenia Maiboroda in response to two posts she shared on the social media site VKontakte. One reportedly contained information about the number of Russian servicemen killed in the Ukraine, while the other was described by the Net Freedoms Project simply as an “emotional video.”

Maiboroda admitted to sharing the posts but maintained that she was not motivated by “political hatred,” a key part of the prosecution’s charges. She said the posts were a reaction to the fact that her brother in Dnipro was trapped under the ruins of a building after it was destroyed by shelling. Whether he survived is unclear.

According to OVD-Info and Mediazona, Yevgenia Maiboroda has been fined twice since the end of 2022 for “discrediting” the Russian army over online posts criticizing the war. In March 2023, she was jailed twice for allegedly displaying “Nazi symbols” and sharing “extremist materials” after she shared images containing a swastika and the insignia of Ukraine’s Azov Battalion. In April, Maiboroda was added to the Russian authorities’ registry of “extremists and terrorists.”

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