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Moscow student charged with attempted participation in IS pleads guilty — judge

November 10, 2015, 11:32 UTC+3
Varvara Karaulova has also refused assistance from two of her lawyers Alexander Noskov and Alexander Karabanov
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© Anton Novoderezhkin/TASS

MOSCOW, November 10. /TASS/. Moscow University student Varvara Karaulova has pled fully guilty of an attempt to join the terrorist organization Islamic State, outlawed in Russia, a Moscow court judge said while reading out the crime case files.

"Karaulova (Ivanova) has pled guilty of the incriminated offense," the judge said.

Karaulova has also refused assistance from two of her lawyers Alexander Noskov and Alexander Karabanov. She is thus left with two lawyers - Sergey Badamishin and Gadzhi Aliyev.

Krabanov told the Moscow City Court that Karaulova made the decision to refuse his assistance under the pressure of investigators. "I am confident that the defendant does not fully understand everything. People in a detention center carried out a certain manipulation with her mind, and that is why I think that should stay in the case," he said.

Karaulova refuted the lawyer’s opinion and said that he decision was made "independently, without any pressure." The court thus dismissed Noskov and Krabanov.

An indictment was brought against student of Moscow State University Varvara Karaulova (now Alexandra Ivanova) arrested on suspicion of trying to join the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group banned in Russia, the investigator said at the Moscow City Court.

The investigator attached to the case the ruling on holding her liable. He presented to the court medical certificates on Karaulova’s health, according to which she may be kept in jail.

On May 27, the 19-year-old Kraulova left home pretending she was heading for the university, but never came back. Later on, she was traced to have secretly taken a flight to Istanbul. On June 2 the Interpol launched searches and two days later, on June 4, its Turkish staff detained Karaulova and another twelve Russians who were trying to cross the border into Syria. They are believed to arrive in Turkey with the aim to reach Syria via the Turkish southern border and to join militants. Karaulova returned to Moscow on June 12. After conducting preliminary proceedings, the Investigative Committee decided not to open a criminal case against Karaulova. However, on October 28 the decision was reviewed and Karaulova was arrested on suspicion of attempting to join IS.

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