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Ukrainian sentenced to 12 years in prison on charges of espionage in Russia

Former Ukrainian footballer Vasily Vasilenko received 12 years in prison on charges of espionage in Russia. What is known about this case, said the publication "New Time".

Photo: Shutterstock

For what the Ukrainian was convicted

The Vasilenko case became known in July 2020 from Russian media reports. And the footballer was detained back in October 2019.

In the fall of 2019, a Ukrainian was detained in Moscow on suspicion of smuggling (part 1 of Art. 226.1 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation: "Illegal movement of potent, poisonous, poisonous, explosive, radioactive substances or ammunition across the border").

And in the spring of 2020, the charges were changed to "espionage in favor of Ukraine." Under this article, he was threatened with 10 to 20 years in prison. The prosecutor demanded 16 years in prison.

And on December 7, 2020, the court ruled - 12 years in prison.

Details of the process were not disclosed, since everything was classified.

According to the source RIA NewsVasilenko was detained in Moscow when he allegedly tried to acquire decommissioned military equipment "on behalf of a Ukrainian company closely related to the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense." The Russian agency claims that this is a kind of large-sized equipment developed in the USSR in the 1960s, which does not have firepower.

All this time, the Ukrainian was in custody in one of the Moscow pre-trial detention centers, his arrest was extended several times.

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In the summer of 2020, the Russian media assured that the Ukrainian did not appeal against his arrest.

Who is Vasily Vasilenko

Vasily Ivanovich Vasilenko is a citizen of Ukraine. He was born on July 28, 1967.

He is also a former footballer. In 1992-2001, he played as a defender in the Ukrainian clubs Tavria (Novotroitskoe), Torpedo (Melitopol) and Druzhba (Berdyansk).

At that time, these were the teams of the second and third football leagues of Ukraine. On the Football Facts website page there is page about Vasily Vasilenko, where you can see the number of matches he played in the indicated teams in the 90s and details of his participation in them. For example, in 1992-1995 Vasilenko took part in matches for the Ukrainian Cup.

It also notes that from July 2000 to June 2001 Vasilenko was one of the coaches of the Melitopol club Olkom (formerly Torpedo), for which he played earlier.

In 2019, Vasilenko was a member of the Mediana amateur club from Melitopol. Just a few days before his arrest, his team played a match with another club in the city.

Who else among Ukrainians has Russia accused of espionage in recent years?

After the outbreak of the conflict between Ukraine and Russia, many Ukrainians became targets of the Russian special services. They are mostly accused of espionage. Most of them remain in Russia as political prisoners, only a few managed to escape, getting on the exchange lists.

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Among the prisoners was also a Ukrainian businessman and Maidan activist Valentin Vyhovsky. He was detained back in 2014 in Simferopol. And already in 2015 he was sentenced to 11 years in a maximum security colony on charges of espionage. He went to serve his sentence in Utrobino (Kirov region of the Russian Federation). The FSB investigated the case under the heading "top secret". The trial took place behind closed doors with an appointed lawyer. Russia accused Vygovsky of “using the Internet to attract employees of Russian organizations of the military-industrial complex of the aerospace profile to collect and transfer closed technical documentation to him.”

In 2018, the Russian lawyer detained Igor Kiyashko, a Ukrainian lawyer, who came to Russia to buy medicines for his son. At first he was accused of arms smuggling, and later, of espionage and sentenced to 8 years in prison.

Entrepreneur Viktor Shura was detained on December 9, 2014, charged under Art. 275 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation ("High treason in the form of espionage"). Shura was sentenced to 12 years in prison and sent to serve him in Tatarstan, and then in a correctional colony in Bryansk.

Broker from Donetsk region Konstantin Davydenko was detained in 2018. He was accused of espionage and talked to 10,5 years in prison in a strict regime colony. Later, his term was reduced to 7 years. According to the investigation, Davydenko passed on to the Ukrainian special services "information about the activities of units and formations of the Federal Service of the National Guard of Russia and FSB officers."

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And in the so-called DPR, Alexander Marchenko was detained. He was kept in an isolation ward and tortured, and then taken to the Russian Federation. In April 2018, Russia opened a criminal case against the Ukrainian and accused him of attempting military smuggling. After that, Marchenko was transferred to a Russian jail, and in December 2018, an even heavier charge of espionage was added.

Ukrainian journalist Roman Sushchenko, a correspondent for the Ukrinform agency in France, was detained on September 30, 2016 in Moscow. He was accused of espionage and sentenced to 12 years in a maximum security colony. Sushchenko was released on September 7, 2019 as part of a large prisoner exchange.

Ukrainian engineer and pensioner Yuriy Soloshenko, who for a long time worked as the general director of the Znamya defense plant in Poltava, was detained during a trip to Russia in August 2014. In October 2015, the Moscow City Court sentenced Soloshenko to 6 years in a strict regime colony for espionage. At that time, Soloshenko was 73 years old. In June 2016, he was released through an exchange. Soloshenko died in Ukraine in April 2018 after a serious illness.

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