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Crimean Tatar Leader's Son Found Guilty Of Manslaughter

Khaiser Dzhemilev, son of veteran Crimean Tatar leader Mustafa Dzhemilev. (file photo)

Khaiser Dzhemilev, son of veteran Crimean Tatar leader Mustafa Dzhemilev. (file photo)

The son of a leading Crimean Tatar figure has been found guilty of manslaughter by a Russian court.

Khaiser Dzhemilev, son of veteran Crimean Tatar leader Mustafa Dzhemilev, was arrested in May 2013 by Ukrainian authorities in connection with the shooting death of his friend.

Khaiser Dzhemilev had claimed that he shot his friend by accident.

Dzhemilev faced a possible murder sentence but was found guilty by the Krasnodar court on June 2 of death by negligence, which carries a lesser sentence. He was also found guilty of stealing and possessing a firearm.

After Crimea's annexation by Russia in March 2014, the Moscow-backed authorities took over the case and transferred him to Russia's Krasnodar region.

Khaiser Dzhemilev was held on three charges under the Russian Criminal Code, including murder and illegal possession of weapons.

He was found guilty under the code's Article 109, which is punishable by up to two years in prison.

Had he been found guilty of murder he could have been handed a 15-year sentence.

Dzhemilev's lawyer, Nikolai Polozov, said earlier that the European Court of Human Rights had ruled that Russia must release Khaiser from detention, but Moscow ignored the ruling.

Polozov told RFE/RL in April that Russia had violated both his client's rights and international regulations by ignoring the European court ruling.

Mustafa Dzhemilev, who strongly protested the annexation of Crimea and is currently living in Kyiv, was barred in May from entering the peninsula and has claimed Russia was holding his son hostage.

The elder Dzhemilev, 71, is a member of the Ukrainian parliament and a well-known Soviet-era human rights activist. He served six jail sentences in Soviet prison camps from 1966 to 1986. He is also known for going on a 303-day hunger strike -- the longest in the history of the Soviet human rights movement.

Based on reporting by RIA and TASS