© Reuters. Legislation enforcement officers stand guard earlier than a listening to to think about the case in opposition to Russian opposition chief Navalny in Moscow
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny returned to court docket on Tuesday for a trial on slander adjustments he calls politically motivated.
Navalny, President Vladimir Putin’s most outstanding critic, was jailed this month for nearly three years for parole violations he mentioned have been trumped up. The West has condemned the case and is discussing attainable sanctions on Russia.
Within the slander case, Navalny stands accused of defaming a World Conflict Two veteran who took half in a promotional video backing constitutional reforms final 12 months that permit Putin run for 2 extra phrases within the Kremlin after 2024 if he needs.
Navalny described the individuals within the video as traitors and corrupt lackeys. He accuses authorities of utilizing the slander expenses to smear his popularity.
Veterans of what Moscow calls the Nice Patriotic Conflict are revered by most Russians and criticism of them is thought to be socially unacceptable and insulting.
State prosecutors have been anticipated in a while Tuesday to inform the court docket what punishment they’re searching for for Navalny, state media reported.
Though the slander cost, if confirmed, is punishable by as much as two years in jail, his lawyer has mentioned that Navalny can not face a custodial sentence on this occasion as a result of the alleged crime was dedicated earlier than the legislation was modified to make it a jailable offence.
It stays unclear whether or not the decide within the case agrees with that evaluation.
Lesser punishments embrace a superb or neighborhood service.
Navalny’s arrest and jailing sparked nationwide avenue protests in Russia, however his allies say they’ve paused critical demonstrations till the spring.
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