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Prosecutor demands nine years in jail for suspected arsonist

December 04, 2012, 15:32 UTC+3

Datsik is accused of robbing and torching a church

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ST PETERSBURG, December 4 (Itar-Tass) — The prosecutor for the state on Tuesday demanded nine years in a general regime penal colony for Vyacheslav Datsik /alias "Redhead Tarzan"/ at the Nevsky district court of St.Petersburg where the parties began to present their arguments. Datsik is accused of robbing and torching a church.

Speaking at the hearing, the prosecutor underlined that there were aggravating circumstances in the case: the robbery had been committed by a group, and Datsik had been actively involved in the crime. Also, the prosecutor insisted that his torching the church was motivated by hate and strife.

Datsik's lawyer Vadim Degtyarov called the prosecutor's jail term demand "excessive."

The prosecutor asked the court to drop criminal prosecution of Pyotr Stepanov, a second suspect in the church arson case.

Datsik was arrested for the first time in Russia in 2007 after robbing a mobile phone retailer. The court found him insane and ordered compulsory treatment. In 2010, Datsik was transferred to the Druzhnoselskaya mental hospital in the Leningrad region from which he escaped. It was after his getaway that the West Telecom retailer was robbed, of which he is now accused.

A month later, Redhead Tarzan suddenly appeared in Norway, where he sought political asylum. The Norwegian authorities promptly arrested him for illegal carrying of firearms. In 2010, an Oslo court sentenced the Russian to eight months in prison. However, in March 2011, Datsik was extradited and has been under arrest since.

After the extradition from Norway at the request by Russian law-enforcement bodies, the former athlete was found sane. Norwegian specialists had also found him sane.

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