Valery Kotovich. Photo: Vitaly Kolbasin/AIF

03 June 2023, 12:56

Rights defenders announce Colonel Kotovich to be political prisoner

Valery Kotovich, a Colonel of the "Rosgvardiya" (Russian National Guard) from the Rostov Region, has been sentenced to six years in colony for expressing his personal opinion about the actions of the Russian Army in Ukraine. This was reported by the human rights project "Support for Political Prisoners. Memorial", which has demanded to release the Colonel.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on May 2, the court sentenced Valery Kotovich, a former citizen of Ukraine and former head of the procurement division of the Southern Logistics Centre of the "Rosgvardiya", to six years in prison, finding him guilty of spreading fakes about the Russian Army.

Valery Kotovich served in the internal troops of Ukraine in the Crimea. In 2014, he received Russian citizenship and entered the service of Russian law enforcement bodies. Alexei Kustov, the head of the above logistics centre, and Eduard Glebov, his deputy, said that after the start of the Russia's special military operation (SMO) in Ukraine, Kotovich's relations with his colleagues worsened. According to their version, their subordinates reported to them that he spoke disapprovingly about the actions of the Russian Army.

In their turn, human rights defenders assert that Kotovich's statements in private conversations "have realized his right to the freedom of expression and cannot be qualified as a crime."

Valery Kotovich and Ilya Karpenko became the first Russian militaries to be charged under a new article on disseminating false information about the Russian Army.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on June 2, 2023 at 02:55 pm MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Source: Caucasian Knot

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