Russian opposition leader Navalny appears in court, could face prison

Moscow, Feb 2 (efe-epa).- Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny appeared in court Tuesday for a hearing that could see him jailed for 3.5 years on charges he claims are politically-motivated.

Navalny was detained on 17 January when he returned to Russia from Germany after months of recovering from a Novichok nerve agent poisoning that almost claimed his life. The 44-year-old has accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of being implicated in the attack.

Russia’s penitentiary service wants a district court in Moscow to order Navalny to serve a suspended prison sentence he was given for fraud charges in 2014. It claims he violated the parole conditions of the sentence while in Germany.

Navalny, 44, arrived at the court with his lawyer, Olga Mikhailova, and wife, Yulia. His arrest last month sparked protests in Russia and over 5,600 people were arrested during a demonstration on Sunday, according to local media site OVD-Info.EFE-EPA


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