While Black Lives Matter demonstrators fill the streets of cities around the world, opening a new chapter in the history of anti-racist and anti-fascist struggle, the Russian anti-fascists Viktor Filinkov and Yuli Boyarshinov are starting long jail sentences.
A St Petersburg court sentenced Filinkov to seven years, and Boyarshinov to five-and-a-half, on 22 June, on trumped-up charges of involvement in a “terrorist grouping” – the “Network”. In February, seven other defendants were jailed by a court in Penza for between six and 18 years, and last year another in St Petersburg for three-and-a-half years.
Detailed evidence that the “network” case defendants were subjected to horrific tortures after their arrest
has been published and submitted to state bodies. President Vladimir Putin last year cynically promised to look into it. Nevertheless, the defendants have been railroaded to penal colonies.
This portrait of Viktor Filinkov – who refused to admit guilt and received one of the heaviest sentences – is by Yevgeny Antonov. It was first published in Russian by the Petersburg news outlet Bumaga.
On Monday 22 June, the 2nd Western District Military Court [in St Petersburg] announced the sentences on the Petersburg defendants in the “Network” case, Viktor Filinkov and Yuli Boyarshinov. They were found guilty of involvement in a terrorist grouping (article 205.4, part 2 of the criminal code). Filinkov was sentenced to seven years in a penal colony (standard regime). Boyarshinov got five and a half years (Yuli was also convicted of the illegal possession of explosive materials (article 222.1, part 1)).
Four days before the sentencing, Filinkov addressed the court. The 25-year old computer programmer set out the inconsistencies in the prosecutor’s case, and used diagrams to show why the PGP [Pretty Good Privacy encryption] programme would not be used by a conspiratorial terrorist group, as the prosecution had claimed.
In his closing statement, Filinkov stated that the internal affairs ministry, the prosecutor, the federal prison service, the Investigative Committee, the federal security service [FSB], the court and the Read the rest of this entry »