MOSCOW, July 13. /TASS/. Moscow’s District Military Court has found guilty all the five defendants in the case of Russian politician Boris Nemtsov’s murder and gave them 11 to 20-year sentences in a high-security penal colony. The decision was made by Judge Yuri Zhitnikov based on the jury’s guilty verdict.
"This is the final sentence for the defendants: Dadayev is handed 20 years in prison and a fine of 100,000 rubles ($1,659), Anzor Gubashev is sentenced to 19 years in prison and a fine of 100,000 rubles, Shadid Shubashev receives a sentence of 16 years in prison and a fine of 100,000 rubles, Temirlan Eskerkhanov is sentenced to 14 years in prison and a fine of 100,000 rubles, Khamzat Bakhayev is sentenced to 11 years in prison and a fine of 100,000 rubles. Eskerkhanov will be deprived of his ensign military rank, while Dadayev will be deprived of his lieutenant military rank and the Order of Courage.
The convicts will serve out their sentences in a high-security penal colony. Apart from Dadayev, the freedom of other four convicts will be restricted for another two years after they have served out the sentence. However, the court has taken into account the time they have already spent in custody since March 2015. Material evidence has been handed over to the Russian Investigative Committee which continues to look into the criminal case.
At Wednesday’s pleadings, Prosecutor Maria Semenenko filed a request to pronounce the defendants guilty and give them sentences starting from 17 years to life imprisonment. She demanded that Zaur Dadayev be jailed for life in a high-security penal colony, Anzor Gubashev serve 23 years in jail, Shadid Gubashev be handed 21 years behind bars, Tamerlan Eskerkhanov be sentenced to19 years in prison and Khamzat Bakhayev be given a 17 year-sentence.
At the same time, the defense attorney requested the court to dismiss the jury but the court rejected this request.
Convicts’ lawyers to appeal verdict
The counsel for five persons convicted for the murder of opposition politician Boris Nemtsov will shortly appeal against the verdict passed by the Moscow District Military Court, one of the convicts’ lawyers told TASS.
"The verdict will be appealed against in the coming days. This will surely be done next week," the lawyer said.
The agents of Boris Nemtsov’s daughter, Zhanna, say that those who arranged and payed for her father’s murder must face a more severe punishment, the complainant’s lawyer Vadim Porokhov told TASS.
"The inevitability of punishment is what is most important. However, we are confident that those who organized and paid for this crime must face the harshest punishment," the lawyer said.
In his turn, Nemtsov’s former aide Ilya Yashun, who was present at the verdict announcement in the Moscow District Military Court, believes that the sentence imposed on Dadaev is insufficient. "Of course, it’s not enough. What is 20 years for a human life?" he noted.
The convicts stated in court that they are puzzled by the sentences they had been given.
"I don’t understand what I have been convicted for," Shadid Gubashev said.
"May God be your judge," Eskerkhanov said addressing the judge and adding that he also did not understand his sentence.
Nemtsov murder case
Boris Nemtsov, former deputy prime minister under then-President Boris Yeltsin, co-chairman of the Parnas party and lawmaker of the Yaroslavl regional legislature, was gunned down in downtown Moscow on February 27, 2015. Five persons were arrested on suspicion of murdering the politician: Zaur Dadayev, Anzor and Shadid Gubashev, Tamerlan Eskerkhanov and Khamzat Bakhayev who are believed to be the perpetrators of this criminal action. Another suspect, Beslan Shavanov, resisted arrest and blew himself up.
According to investigators, Ruslan Mukhudinov, a former officer of the Chechen Sever (or North), is the mastermind and organizer of the murder. Mukhudinov was charged in absentia. A criminal case against him is investigated separately.
Investigators continue gathering evidence against Mukhudinov, Russian Investigative Committee spokeswoman Svetlana Petrenko said on Thursday.
Mukhudinov has been on the international wanted list since November 2015.