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Macedonia Court Sentences At Least 17 In Espionage Trial

A Macedonian court has sentenced at least 17 people to jail for up to 15 years in the country's first espionage trial since its independence from Yugoslavia in 1991.

Judge Gojko Ristov said evidence presented during the trial proved the suspects' guilt. The countries they allegedly spied for were not named.

Local media reports said the group was selling classified information to the intelligence services of Greece and Hungary.

The prime suspect, Marjan Efremov, a former employee of the Macedonian secret services, received 15 years in jail.

Goran Stojkov, a former police general, was handed a nine-year prison term.

The others include interior ministry and parliament officials.

The court said the alleged spy ring was formed in 2009 and was active until 2012.

The accused were arrested in September 2013.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP