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Russian Nationalists' Combat Organization leader sentenced to life

July 24, 2015, 13:48 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The jury of the Moscow City Court earlier found him guilty of organizing a series of murders, illegal drug trafficking and establishing an extremist organization
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 Ilya Goryachev

Ilya Goryachev

© Alexander Scherbak/TASS

MOSCOW, July 24. /TASS/. The Moscow City Court on Friday sentenced Ilya Goryachev, a leader of the Combat Organization of Russian Nationalists, to life imprisonment. The court ruled that Goryachev would serve his term in a high-security prison, a TASS correspondent reported.

"To sentence Goryachev to life imprisonment in a high-security penal colony," Judge Pavel Melekhin announced. The court also ruled to recover from Goryachev five million rubles ($87,000) in favor of the mother of murdered leader of the Antifa movement Ilya Japaridze.

According to the defendant’s lawyer Nikolay Polozov, the defense intends to appeal the verdict. "Of course, we will appeal the verdict. We hope the case will be reviewed," he said. A TASS correspondent reported that Goryachev fainted when the verdict was announced, after that he was allowed to sit while listening to the verdict.

The jury of the Moscow City Court earlier found him guilty of organizing a series of murders, illegal drug trafficking and establishing an extremist organization. The guilty verdict was passed unanimously. The jury also ruled that Goryachev was not recommended for mercy.

The criminal investigation against others persons involved in committing these crimes is under way.

Goryachev called himself a political prisoner and said the criminal case was trumped up. He was fleeing from prosecution and was put on the international wanted list. In November 2013, he was extradited to Russia from Serbia.

Goryachev’s accomplices Nikita Tikhonov, Maxim Baklagin and Vyacheslav Isayev were earlier sentenced to life imprisonment. Tikhonov was found guilty of murdering lawyer Stanislav Markelov and journalist Anastasia Baburova. Baklagin and Isayev were found guilty of murdering judge Eduard Chuvashov. Another member of the group, Mikhail Volkov, was sentenced to 24 years in prison.

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