Accessibility links

Breaking News

'Illegal Border Crossing' Added To Russian Charges Against Savchenko

Ukrainian military pilot Nadia Savchenko stands inside a defendants' cage as she attends a court hearing in Moscow on April 17.

Investigators have brought an additional charge against Ukrainian military pilot Nadia Savchenko in what the prosecution called it's "final" case against her, alleging that she illegally crossed the border from Ukraine into Russia.

Russian Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin said on April 24 that Savchenko has been officially charged with "complicity in the killing of two or more people, complicity in the killing of two or more people using methods posing danger to the public based on political hatred, and illegally crossing the Russian border."

Markin said the investigation of Savchenko's case had been completed, meaning that the findings of the probe will be sent to her for review and later sent to court for her trial.

Savchenko's lawyer, Mark Feigin, confirmed the additional charge and said his client had pleaded not guilty.

Savchenko, 33, is charged in connection with a June 2014 mortar attack that killed two Russian journalists covering the conflict between government forces and Russian-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine.

She says she was kidnapped by pro-Russia separatists who handed her over to Russian military authorities in Ukraine, who illegally took her across the border into Russia.

In her native Ukraine, Savchenko has became a symbol of heroism for her stoic stance in Russian custody.

She has held a lengthy hunger strike, protesting her arrest and insisting the charges against her are fabricated.

Based on reporting by TASS and Interfax