Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has been sentenced to nine years in prison, on top of the term he is already serving.
According to CBS News, the trial has been seen as an attempt to keep President Vladimir Putin’s adversary behind bars for as long as possible.
Details: On Tuesday, a Moscow court found Navalny guilty of fraud and contempt of court.
The prosecution accused him of embezzling money from his Anti-Corruption Foundation, an organization that conducts high-profile investigations into Putin and his circle, and for insulting a judge during a previous trial, per ABC News. Navalny denied all allegations.
On top of the nine-year prison sentence, he was also fined 1.2 million rubles, or $10,700. His lawyers were detained after the ruling.
Driving the news: After spending 21⁄2 years in a prison camp, Navalny will be moved to a high-security prison.
“Without public protection, Alexey will be face-to-face with those who have already tried to kill him, and nothing will stop them from trying again,” his spokeswoman Kira Yarmysh said Tuesday. “Therefore, we are now talking not only about Alexey’s freedom, but also about his life.”
What he said: After the trial, Navalny took to Twitter and said, “9 years. Well, as the characters of my favorite TV series ‘The Wire’ used to say: ‘You only do two days. That’s the day you go in and the day you come out.’” He added that he had a T-shirt with that slogan but the prison authorities confiscated it, “considering the print was extremist.”
9 years. Well, as the characters of my favorite TV series “The Wire” used to say: “You only do two days. That's the day you go in and the day you come out"— Alexey Navalny (@navalny) March 22, 2022
I even had a T-shirt with this slogan, but the prison authorities confiscated it, considering the print extremist.
The bigger picture: The Kremlin has been cracking down on dissent, which is how Navalny and his allies have landed on the country’s registry of terrorists and extremists, with their bank accounts frozen, according to Axios.
Anyone associated with the Anti-Corruption Foundation can face up to 10 years in prison
Flashback: Navalny was arrested in January 2021, when he returned from Germany after spending five months recovering from poisoning, for which he blamed the Kremlin. He was sentenced to 21⁄2 years in prison for parole violations.