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Russian Opposition Activist Gets Eight Years In Jail


Activist Taisia Osipova (right) is escorted to a court in Smolensk in December 2011.

Activist Taisia Osipova (right) is escorted to a court in Smolensk in December 2011.

A court in the western Russian city of Smolensk has sentenced an opposition activist to eight years in jail for illegal drug violations.

Defense lawyers for Taisia Osipova, an activist of the Other Russia movement, say they will appeal the verdict.

Osipova was arrested in November 2010 on charges of illegal drug dealing.

Osipova's lawyers maintain the case was manufactured in order to put pressure on her husband, Sergei Fomchenkov, a senior member of the unregistered Other Russia opposition movement.

In December, the court sentenced Osipova to 10 years in prison, but in February the regional court in Smolensk declined to uphold the verdict and ordered a new trial.

In March, former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev asked the Prosecutor-General's Office to analyze the legality of the conviction of 32 individuals, including Osipova.


Based on reporting by RIA Novosti and Interfax
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