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Attorneys visit captain of Russia’s Nord vessel in Ukrainian jail

April 08, 2:48 UTC+3 SIMFEROPOL

On March 25, Ukraine’s State Border Service detained a fishing vessel flying the Russian flag in the Sea of Azov, whose crew includes ten Russians

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SIMFEROPOL, April 8. /TASS/. Defense attorneys on Saturday visited Vladimir Gorbenko, a Russian captain who is being kept in a Ukrainian pretrial detention facility, to deliver him medicines, food, clothes and an Easter cake, lawyer Dmitry Shcherbina has told TASS.

"Together with Alexander Rudenko, who is also a member of the defense team for the Nord ship crew, I visited the captain in the pretrial detention facility to convey Easter greetings to him and deliver an Easter cake, food, clothes and other necessities," he said.

Shcherbina added that attorneys also brought medicines for Gorbenko.

"We managed to organize IV therapy for him, because prior to our visit he was only treated with pills. Everything is fine. According to my estimates, his condition is satisfactory. We expect him to walk out of the pretrial detention center on Tuesday, April 10," he said.

Vessel’s detention

On March 25, Ukraine’s State Border Service detained a fishing vessel flying the Russian flag in the Sea of Azov, whose crew includes ten Russian nationals from Kerch. The Ukrainian authorities accused the crew members of "violating entry and exit rules to Ukraine’s occupied territory," which provides for an imprisonment of up to 15 days.

The vessel’s captain is charged with "violating entry and exit rules to Ukraine’s occupied territory, aimed at damaging the state’s interests," and may face up to five years in prison, while the vessel may be confiscated.

On April 6, a court in Kherson, Ukraine, ruled to arrest Gorbenko until May 31. However, he may be released on bail which has already been posted.

Simultaneously, the Primorsky District Court of Mariupol in Ukraine imposed administrative fines to all members of the crew for the total sum of about $1,200. The ship’s owner earlier told TASS that the crew was allowed to leave the vessel, but they will have to stay in Mariupol at least until April 10 to testify in the criminal case against the captain.

In turn, the Federal Security Service Directorate for the Crimean Republic has launched a criminal case against Ukraine’s State Border Service on the charges of "hijacking an aircraft, watercraft or a railway train.".

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