Home world Navalny tells judge ‘you, your system and Putin are traitors against Russia’ as he loses appeal #Breakingnews

Navalny tells judge ‘you, your system and Putin are traitors against Russia’ as he loses appeal #Breakingnews

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Jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny unsurprisingly lost his legal appeal against a nine-year prison sentence on Tuesday as he lashed the judge as a ‘traitor to Russia’.

President Vladimir Putin‘s top foe appeared at the hearing in Moscow City Court via video-link from his prison colony and took the opportunity to tell the judge, ‘it’s you, your system and Putin who are traitors against the Russian people’. 

His sentencing came as the Kremlin seeks to silence the remaining government critics within Russia as it pushes on with its military offensive in neighbouring Ukraine.

A Moscow court ruled to ‘leave the sentence without changes’ and for it to enter into force immediately, meaning that the leader of Russia’s embattled opposition will be transferred to a strict-regime penal colony with harsh conditions, including few family visits.

Navalny in late March had his sentence extended to nine years after he was found guilty of embezzlement and contempt of court in what his allies say are trumped up charges to remove a dangerous adversary for the Kremlin. 

President Vladimir Putin’s top foe appeared at the hearing at Moscow City Court via video-link from behind bars at his prison colony outside Moscow, wearing a black prisoner uniform and a fur-collared winter jacket.

At a hearing yesterday Putin critic Alexei Navalny had his nine-year jail sentence to a penal colony upheld by a Moscow court

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny is seen on a screen via a video link from the IK-2 corrective penal colony in Pokrov

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny is seen on a screen via a video link from the IK-2 corrective penal colony in Pokrov

A man walks past the barbed wire fence of the IK-3 penal colony where Navalny is reported to have served some of his sentence

A man walks past the barbed wire fence of the IK-3 penal colony where Navalny is reported to have served some of his sentence

He used the hearing as an opportunity to speak to the media and once again lambast Vladimir Putin and the Russian state for its crimes and corruption that he and his allies charge it with

He used the hearing as an opportunity to speak to the media and once again lambast Vladimir Putin and the Russian state for its crimes and corruption that he and his allies charge it with

President Vladimir Putin's top foe appeared at the hearing at Moscow City Court via video-link from behind bars at his prison colony outside Moscow, wearing a black prisoner uniform and a fur-collared winter jacket

President Vladimir Putin’s top foe appeared at the hearing at Moscow City Court via video-link from behind bars at his prison colony outside Moscow, wearing a black prisoner uniform and a fur-collared winter jacket

Navalny wore a black prisoner uniform

He was in good spirits during the hearing

The opposition politician appeared composed during the hearing, even joking about problems with the sound system

 Vladimir Putin has moved aggressively to dispose of Navalny, a long-term thorn in his side who has consistently revealed Kremlin corruption and challenged his rule

He dismissed his trial as ‘meaningless’, saying: ‘I despise your court, your system.’

‘It’s you, your system and Putin who are traitors against the Russian people’, said Navalny, 45. ‘I am ready to sit in jail to prove that not everyone in Russia is like this’.

Navalny used his speech to condemn the Kremlin and its military campaign in Ukraine.

‘What Putin is doing is pointless,’ he said. ‘One crazy thief has seized hold of Ukraine and no one understands what he wants to do with it’.

The opposition politician appeared composed during the hearing, even joking about problems with the sound system.

‘Your time will pass and you will burn in hell,’ he concluded his speech.

A former lawyer who rose to prominence more than a decade ago by lampooning Putin’s elite and voicing allegations of corruption on a vast scale, Navalny has been the principal ‘non-systemic’ (i.e. genuine) opposition to Putin and his regime in Russia. 

As a long-term thorn in the side of the Russian autocrat, he was arrested on his return to Russia in January 2021 on charges of breaching bail conditions for a previous dubious fraud conviction.

He was accused of breaching bail conditions after he was flown to Germany for emergency treatment in August 2020 due to being poisoned by the Kremlin with Novichok.

Navalny managed to have a family meeting before being moved to a different colony. Pictured: Navalny with his wife Yulia, right, daughter Daria, and son Zakhar in 2019

Navalny managed to have a family meeting before being moved to a different colony. Pictured: Navalny with his wife Yulia, right, daughter Daria, and son Zakhar in 2019

In late March, he had his jail time extended to nine years after he was found guilty of embezzling donations to his political organisations and contempt of court.

He was already serving two-and-a-half years in a prison around 100 kilometres (60 miles) east of Moscow for violating parole on old fraud charges.

The new sentence will replace the one he was handed in February 2021, meaning Navalny will remain behind bars for another eight years.

The hearings started last week but Navalny was granted a week’s postponement so he could have a family visit.

Dozens of Navalny’s team and supporters have also been targeted over the last 12 months, with his Anti-Corruption Foundation designated an extremist organisation and effectively outlawed.

Many of the people who worked for his foundation will be facing long-term jail sentences themselves and it is thought that a large number have emigrated. 

Navalny’s constant and consistent charges of corruption against Putin and the Russian state were echoed by Russian diplomat Boris Bondarev, 41, who resigned on Monday after 20 years in the diplomatic service.

He sent a letter to 40 diplomats in which he said he had never been ‘so ashamed of my country’ following Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine.

In the letter, he condemned ‘the aggressive war unleashed by Putin against Ukraine and in fact against the entire Western world’.

Bondarev added that those who conceived the war ‘want only one thing – to remain in power forever, live in pompous tasteless palaces, sail on yachts comparable in tonnage and cost to the entire Russian Navy, enjoying unlimited power and complete impunity.’ 

Russian diplomat Boris Bondarev, 41, (pictured) resigned on Monday morning after 20 years in the diplomatic service before sending a letter to 40 diplomats in which he said he had never been 'so ashamed of my country' following Vladimir Putin's decision to invade Ukraine

Russian diplomat Boris Bondarev, 41, (pictured) resigned on Monday morning after 20 years in the diplomatic service before sending a letter to 40 diplomats in which he said he had never been ‘so ashamed of my country’ following Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine

Navalny rests his arms on his prison bars during a hearing of an appeal against his nine-year prison sentence he was handed in March after being found guilty of embezzlement and contempt of court, in Moscow

Navalny rests his arms on his prison bars during a hearing of an appeal against his nine-year prison sentence he was handed in March after being found guilty of embezzlement and contempt of court, in Moscow

Navalny’s lawyer Olga Mikhailova told the court the sentence should be annulled as it is ‘unjust’ and ‘contradicts international law’, while the prosecutor called it ‘legal and justified’.

Navalny alleged his legal team ‘caught judge (Margarita) Kotova right in the middle of the trial calling someone from the presidential administration’.

Navalny rose to prominence as an anti-corruption blogger and, before his imprisonment, mobilised anti-government protests across Russia.

In 2020, he narrowly survived a poisoning attack with Novichok, a Soviet-designed military-grade nerve agent. Despite accusations from Navalny, the Kremlin denied any involvement.

He was arrested last year on his return from treatment in Germany, sparking widespread condemnation abroad and sanctions from Western capitals.

In 2018, he campaigned as a presidential candidate but was barred from running in the election that saw Putin secure a fourth term in power.

Navalny’s political organisations across the country have been declared ‘extremist’ and shut down.

His key allies have fled Russia and several are wanted by Russian authorities on criminal charges.

Navalny’s team continues publishing investigations into the wealth of Russia’s elites that have garnered millions of views on YouTube.

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