5 Dec 2019 18:28

Crimea resident sentenced to 17 years for establishing Hizb ut-Tahrir cell

ROSTOV-ON-DON/SIMFEROPOL. Dec 5 (Interfax) - The Southern District Military Court found Crimea resident Enver Seitosmanov guilty of arranging the activity of the Hizb ut-Tahrir (terrorist organization banned in Russia) at its hearing in Rostov-on-Don, the court press service said in a statement.

He was convicted of arranging and participating in the activity of a terrorist organization (Part 1, Article 205.5 of the Russian Criminal Code).

"Seitosmanov was sentenced to 17 years in a high-security penitentiary," the statement said.

Lawyer Emil Kurbedinov said that Seitosmanov pleaded not guilty and described his case as politically motivated.

"There is no doubt that we will appeal this sentence, which is unfounded. We will definitely appeal it, in particular, for the purpose of applying to international courts in the future: we need to pass through an appeal court in Russia before sending materials to the European Court of Human Rights," the lawyer said.

Seitosmanov was arrested in 2018 and charged with creating a Hizb ut-Tahrir in Sevastopol.

"He definitively pleaded not guilty. He had two conversations with a provocateur, who pushed him into talking on religious topics, recorded their conversations, and handed them over to the FSB. Religious books were seized. True, some of them are prohibited in Russia, but this is a completely different story, which is not worth of 17 years in prison," Kurbedinov said.

The Russian Supreme Court branded Hizb ut-Tahrir as a terrorist organization and banned its operations in Russia in 2003.