First person accused of spreading ‘false information’ about war jailed in absentia for 9 years
A Moscow court has sentenced the first person to be charged under Russia’s wartime law against spreading ‘knowingly false information’ to nine years in prison in absentia on Monday, reported independent broadcaster Sota.
Veronika Belotserkovskaya, a Russian journalist of Ukrainian origin and owner of a culinary school in France where she lives, was among the first people accused of spreading “false information” on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine after posting on Instagram about Russia’s shelling of a maternity hospital in the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol and the massacre of civilians by Russian forces in the Kyiv suburb of Bucha in March .
In addition to his long prison term, tThe court banned Belotserkovskaya from running websites for a period of five years after her release. As Belotserkovskaya was tried in absentia and lives in France, it is unlikely that she will have to serve her sentence.
Russia passed a law in March criminalizing the sharing of information about the ‘special military operation’ in Ukraine that differed from the Kremlin’s account, and punishing those found guilty of doing so with sentences of up to 15 years. .
Belotserkovskaya once had properties she owns in Russia worth $2.1 million seized by court order, added to the Russian government. list of wanted persons and declared a “foreign agent”, a label with strict financial and legal constraints.