The Basmanny Court of Moscow sentenced the blogger in absentia Veronica Belotserkovsky (included by the Ministry of Justice in the register of foreign agents) to nine years in a general regime colony in the case of spreading fakes about the Russian army, RBC was told in the press service of the court.
In addition, Belotserkovskaya was banned from administering websites for a period of five years. The term of serving the sentence will be calculated from the moment of extradition to Russia or detention on the territory of the country.
The verdict has not yet entered into force.
Such a term for Belotserkovskaya was requested by the prosecution. The case against the blogger launched in March last year. The maximum term under the article on the public dissemination of fakes about the actions of the Russian military motivated by political hatred or enmity (paragraph “e”, part 2, article 207.3 of the Criminal Code) is ten years in prison.
According to investigators, Belotserkovskaya posted on Instagram (the owner of the social network, the Meta company, is recognized as extremist in Russia, her activities are banned) a number of posts where “under the guise of reliable messages, deliberately false information was contained about the use of the Russian Armed Forces to destroy cities and the civilian population of Ukraine, including children.”
The Investigative Committee noted that Belotserkovskaya was abroad, in May she was put on the wanted list and arrested in absentia. In June, the Basmanny Court arrested her property – an apartment and a parking space in Moscow, as well as residential buildings, an apartment and a land plot in St. Petersburg.
RIA Novosti, 02/06/2023, “The court sentenced blogger Belotserkovskaya* in absentia to nine years in prison”: The case was heard in absentia, the accused was put on the international wanted list. Defender Elvira Kashigina, who represents her interests by appointment, has previously stated that she disagrees with the position of the prosecution. She insisted that her client was “an accidental criminal, the crime was committed due to misinformation, emotional stress, under the influence of emotions.” Belotserkovskaya*, according to her, has been living in Europe since 2012 “in complete disinformation, under pressure from foreign media”, which “whether you like it or not, but believe it.”
The lawyer appointed by the court drew arguments from an interview with her client and explained that she posted the controversial post after a call from her cousin from Odessa, being in a “very emotional state”, “in a state of passion, since she could not sleep and eat, she constantly cried “.
According to the investigation, from March to April 2022, Belotserkovskaya* from abroad posted three publications on Instagram** on her personal page. As part of the case, property worth 153 million rubles was arrested.
* An individual acting as a foreign agent in Russia.
** Meta activity (social networks Facebook, Instagram) is banned in Russia as extremist. — Inset K.ru
TASS, 02/06/2023, “The court sentenced Veronika Belotserkovskaya in absentia to nine years in prison”: Belotserkovskaya is the author of popular cookbooks, an entrepreneur, and a blogger. She is the publisher of the magazine “Sobaka.ru” and the owner of a culinary school in the south of France. — Inset K.ru