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Russian Police Sentenced For Murder In Chelyabinsk

CHELYABINSK, Russia -- Four policemen have been sentenced to prison sentences after being found guilty of murdering a man in the central Russian province of Chelyabinsk, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

The officers were convicted of beating Sergei Udavikhin to death after detaining him following an altercation at a bar in the city of Chelyabinsk in November 2008.

Major Stanislav Fomin and Sergeant Vilshat Khadiev were given 10 years in prison, warrant officer Rinat Kamalov 12 years, and Sergeant Sergei Vasilenko 11 years. A fifth policeman, Sergeant Ruslan Tarasenko, who was found to have beaten other men but did not harm Udavikhin, was given a suspended sentence of three years.

The policemen detained Udavikhin and three others at the bar after a fight that Udavikhin had apparently witnessed. At the police station the four policemen were joined by Fomin, who was on duty at the time.

The police were found by the court to have attacked Udavikhin, punching him dozens of times and killing him.

A coroner's report states that Udavikhin's skull and spine were severely injured. Several of his ribs were broken and several of his internal organs were ruptured as a result of the beating.