Russian court sentences man convicted of killing Putin critic Nemtsov

Five men convicted of killing Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov were on Thursday given lengthy prison terms.

The court found that Zaur Dadayev shot Mr Nemtsov from a vehicle while the politician was walking with his girlfriend near the Kremlin, and that four other men acted as accomplices for supplying surveillance.

Four other men convicted for various roles in the murder, which sent shockwaves throughout Russia's fragmented political opposition, were sentenced to between 11 and 19 years, state media reported.


The bold killing of Nemtsov, 55, on a bridge near the Kremlin shocked many Russians; questions remain about who reportedly placed a large bounty on his life.

One of the young liberal politicians who sprang to prominence after the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, Nemtsov was once considered a possible successor by Boris Yeltsin, the first president of Russian Federation.

Prosecutor Maria Semenenko, who asked for Dadayev to receive a life sentence, said she may launch an appeal.


In the months before his death he had written detailed reports alleging corruption by Putin, and voiced fears that the Russian president would have him killed. Evidence in the case points to high-ranking government officials in Russia's restive republic of Chechnya, led by Mr. Kadyrov, an ally of Mr. Putin who enjoys the support and protection of the Kremlin. Anzor Gubashev was sentenced to 19 years, Shadid Gubashev to 16 years, Tamerlan Eskerkhanov to 14 years and Khamzat Bakhayev to 11 years.

Shamsudin Tsakayev, Dadayev's lawyer, said after the sentencing there was "incontrovertible proof" his client had not committed the crime.

Vadim Prokhorov, a lawyer for Nemtsov's daughter, denounced the conviction as a cover-up when the men were found guilty in June. Friends and family of the murdered politician said that they were unhappy that the judge had not imposed harsher punishments.



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