On February 9, one-person pickets timed to the sentencing of young people accused of organizing a terrorist association in the Set* (‘Network’) criminal case were held at several sites in the center of Kostroma, the correspondent of 7x7 reported.
Two activists and one supporter of the Left Block Movement took part in the action. First, the picket was held at the monument to Ivan Susanin in the public garden of the same name, then — near the porch of the Kostroma Mayor’s Office.
In general, passers-by were not very interested in the banners, but one man approached one of the participants of the picket steadily and was curious about the tortures. He left when he learned that the defendants in the Set* case had been tortured.
The participants of the action went from the City Administration to Mir Avenue where they, in addition to holding banners, distributed leaflets and then held a picket in Mir Square at the memorial stone to the victims of political repression.
— Our action is dedicated to solidarity with the defendants in the Set* case. Tomorrow [on February 10], these young people will be sentenced to six to 18 years in prison. They played airsoft and were engaged in antifascist activities, and they were arrested, tortured and beaten, as proved by the PMC in St. Petersburg, and now they face a huge sentence. They spent about two years in jail, they were deprived from normal medical care, and their health was deranged. We want to tell the residents of Kostroma about it, explain to people what is happening, because it can affect everyone, — said Irina Shumilova, one of the participants of the picket and the activist of the Left block.
The Privolzhsky District Military Court is considering the Set* criminal case against seven defendants — Ilya Shakursky, Dmitry Pchelintsev, Arman Sagynbayev, Vasily Kuksov, Andrey Chernov, Mikhail Kulkov, and Maxim Ivankin. They are accused under Part 2 of Article 205.4 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (Organization of a Terrorist Community and Participation in It). Shakursky and Pchelintsev are also charged with Part 1 of Article 205.4 of the Criminal Code (Organization of a Terrorist Association). The defendants pleaded not guilty and said they "had confessed" under torture. No criminal case has been opened on the allegations of torture of the defendants in the case.
On February 10, the Privolzhsky District Military Court found Dmitry Pchelintsev guilty in the Set* case and sentenced him to 18 years in prison, Ilya Shakursky — to 16 years in a high-security prison, Andrey Chernov — to 14 years, Maxim Ivankin — to 13 years, and Mikhail Kulkov — to 10 years. Vasily Kuksov and Arman Sagynbayev were given 9 years and 6 years in a general regime penal colony.
*Set (‘Network’) is a terrorist organization banned in Russia.