Russian court acquitted soldier in killing his comrade in occupied Ukraine — Russian media

A Russian court has acquitted a Russian contract soldier who was accused of shooting and killing another soldier in the occupied Ukrainian city of Pervomaisk, claimed Russian propaganda publication Kommersant Jan. 20.

The Novocherkassk Garrison Military Court cleared 41-year-old Chechen contract soldier, Zaindi Takayev, who was on trial for killing a 20-year-old Dagestani native, Magomed Shakhbanov.

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Takayev shot Shakhbanov in the head during a feast in the courtyard of an apartment building in Pervomaisk in June 2022, according to Russian investigators. This account was corroborated by two women who were present at the scene. However, Takayev claimed that he did not kill his "comrade-in-arms," suggesting that the slain man was actually killed by unknown persons “firing from the bushes nearby."

The acquittal may have been influenced by contradictions and inconsistencies in the case file, according to Kommersant.

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Representatives of the victim and the prosecutor's office of the Russian Southern Military District have expressed disagreement with the court's verdict, intending to appeal. The prosecutor's office further indicated the possibility of unanimous jury acquittal under potential external pressure.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine