MOSCOW, June 2./TASS/. Russian former intelligence colonel Vladimir Kvachkov has been charged with justifying terrorism within the framework of a third criminal case against him, his lawyer Oksana Mikhalkina told TASS.
"The investigation department of the FSB directorate in [the Republic of] Mordovia launched a criminal case against Kvachkov in March of this year," she said, noting that the former colonel was facing charges for ‘public appeals for terrorist activity or public justification of terrorism’ (Article 205.2 of the Russian Criminal Code).
Criminal proceedings were launched after Kvachkov’s video appeal was posted on YouTube in March 2015 to mark ten years after an attempt on the life of Rusnano chief Anatoly Chubais, who at the time was head of national power monopoly Unified Energy System. Within a year, investigators were probing into the video, seeing evidence of extremism in it. In March 2016, Kvachkov was officially named as defendant.
Earlier, Kvachkov, a former colonel of GRU military intelligence, was charged with leading a shooting and bombing attack in 2005 on a convoy carrying Anatoly Chubais.
Chubais, an architect of the liberal reforms in the 1990s, is reviled by many for the chaos that accompanied the country's rapid transition to a market economy.
A jury cleared Kvachkov and his associates of all the charges in 2008. The Supreme Court overturned the decision in 2009 and a retrial ended with another acquittal in September, upheld by the Supreme Court. The state paid the retired colonel 450,000 roubles (about 7,000 US dollars) in compensation for the illegal criminal prosecution.
Kvachkov was convicted again in 2013 on charges of an attempt to organize an armed uprising and for recruitment and involvement of people into terrorist activities.
Colonel Kvachkov organized the Minin and Pozharsky Public Militia movement in February 2009. He used the names of Kuzma Minin and Count Dmitry Pozharsky, the two national heroes who led an uprising against Polish invaders early in the 17th century and finally liberated Moscow and the rest of Russia from the Poles, in the organization’s name.