Ukrainian journalist Ruslan Kotsaba was sentenced to imprisonment for three and a half years, RIA Novosti news agency reported citing the Facebook page of the journalist’s attorney Tatyana Montyan on May 12th.
Yesterday at 10 AM, Ivano-Frankovsk City Court sentenced the Ukrainian journalist Ruslan Kotsaba to imprisonment for three and a half years. The Court acquitted Ruslan Kotsaba of the treason charge. The journalist has already served most of the term of his imprisonment while awaiting the sentence of the Court. Nevertheless, the journalist’s attorney Tatyana Montyan announced the Ruslan’s intention to appeal the sentence, “He has already served two years, six months, and 8 days of his sentence because the time that Kotsaba spent in pretrial detention since his arrest in February 2015 was counted as ‘one day for two’. Money stolen by ‘gebnya’ (a contemptuous name used to refer to SBU – Editor) during the search must be returned. Acquit Kotsaba of the treason charge. A penalty of four-odd thousands hryvnia for the expertise is imposed on Ruslan. It is clear that we shall appeal this idiotic verdict of the junta’s Court.” ‘My sentence means a sentence for the freedom of speech and the right to criticize the Ukrainian bitch authorities (in the present context means that the authorities are behaving like criminals, thieves, and killers with respect to the Ukrainian people – Editor)”, was written on a piece of paper unfolded by Ruslan during the verdict.
Ruslan Kotsaba became known after the publication of his video address to the citizens of Ukraine, in which he urged them to avoid the illegal mobilization since martial law was not declared in the country, and the armed conflict in the southeast of the country was a civil war. After that, February 7, 2015, Ruslan was detained and accused of high treason (Article 111 Chapter I of the Special part of the Criminal Code of Ukraine) and obstructing the Armed Forces of Ukraine (Article 114-1 Chapter I of the Special part of the Criminal Code of Ukraine). The prosecution sought for 13-years sentence for the journalist according to these articles.