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Moscow City Court jury acquits journalist accused of slandering police officer

September 23, 2011, 11:45 UTC+3
“The jury found no evidence to prove slander charges, the decision was taken unanimously,” the press service said
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MOSCOW, September 23 (Itar-Tass) — The jury of the Moscow City Court has acquitted journalist Oleg Lurye who was accused of slandering a police officer, the court’s press service told Itar-Tass on Friday.

“The jury found no evidence to prove slander charges, the decision was taken unanimously,” the press service said.

It is expected that the verdict of acquittal will be read out later in the day.

This is the second criminal case against the journalist. He was charged under the Criminal Court article “slandering a judge, a jury, a prosecutor, an investigator, a court bailiff, or a police officer.”

According to investigators, while being in custody in a Moscow detention centre in May 2008, Lurye wrote a feature article entitled “An Open Letter of Oleg Lurye to Investigator of the Russian Interior Ministry’s Investigations Committee Lieutenant Colonel Kisin A.V.” The article, which had information discrediting the investigator, was posted on Lurye’s behalf in Live Journal.

In March 2009, Moscow’s Tverskoy Court sentenced the journalist to eight years in prison and a fine of 200,000 roubles on charges of extorting money from member of the upper house of the Russian parliament Vladimir Slutsker and of large-scale fraud. In July, the Moscow City Court ruled to decrease the prison term to four years.

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