Sunday, November 6, 2016

Russian Federation Supreme Court: not so fast!

Remember the case of Colonel General Vladimir Chirkin, whose sentence was substantially mitigated by a Moscow military court? Well, the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation has set that decision aside, according to this article from RAPSI:
Upon the Supreme Court’s order, the case is to be reconsidered. 
On August 14, 2015, the Moscow Garrison Military Court sentenced Chirkin to five years in prison for taking bribes. He was also stripped of the military rank, and state and departmental awards. 
Later the charges were reclassified to fraud and his sentence was changed to a 90,000 ruble ($1,400) fine. Chirkin returned his military rank as well. In April, the Moscow Regional Military Court upheld a lower court’s ruling to expunge conviction of Chirkin. 
On June 15, the Moscow Regional Military Court upheld mitigation of sentence for Chirkin and his release. 
Prosecutors demanded a 5-year prison term for Chirkin on corruption charges. The court dismissed the motion and raised a prohibition imposed on ex-Russian Army commander to hold public or military office for three years. 
According to prosecution, Chirkin took 450,000 rubles ($7,200) in bribe to help Major Vladimir Lopanov of the reserves, who had served with the Moscow Military District, receive a one-room apartment to which he was entitled under law. 
After paying the bribe, Lopanov was unable to move into the apartment, which was already occupied by another ex-soldier. Lopanov tried unsuccessfully to get his money back and later complained to a prosecutor’s office. 
Chirkin pleaded not guilty in this case and claimed that the intermediaries deceived Lopanov. They allegedly extorted money from him, using the general’s name as a cover.

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