Alexei Navalny looks thinner than ever as he appears in court to deny ‘absurd’ charges of ‘extremism’ that could land him in a Russian prison for life
Navalny, who was arrested in 2021, appeared in court in prison garb as media and the former lawyer’s family were forced to follow the proceedings from afar. The jailed Russian opposition leader, 47, is an arch nemesis of Vladimir Putin.
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has appeared in court on charges that leave him looking thinner than ever, which could put him behind bars for decades.
The new trial is underway at a maximum-security prison in Melekhovo, 150 miles east of Moscow, where Navalny is serving a nine-year sentence for fraud and contempt of court.
The jailed Russian opposition leader and arch nemesis of Vladimir Putin has exposed government corruption and organized large-scale anti-Kremlin protests.
The 47-year-old was arrested in January 2021 after returning to Moscow after recovering from nerve agent poisoning in Germany that he blamed on the Kremlin.
Navalny said the new extremism charge, which he dismissed as ‘absurd’, could land him in prison for another 30 years.
Alexei Navalny appeared in court on Monday on charges he described as ‘absurd’
He said an investigator told him he would face a separate military court trial on terrorism charges that could carry a possible life sentence.
The new trial, which opened Monday, comes as Russian authorities are conducting a sweeping crackdown on dissent amid the conflict in Ukraine, which Navalny has criticized.
The Moscow City Court, which opened the hearing in Navalny’s IK-6 prison, did not allow the media into the room, forcing members of the press to watch the proceedings via video feed from a separate building.
Navalny’s parents were also denied access to the courtroom and followed the hearing remotely.
Navalny’s parents, and the media, were forced to follow the legal process from afar
Navalny, dressed in his prison garb, looked timid but spoke emphatically and pointedly as the trial began.
The new charges against him relate to the activities of his anti-corruption foundation and statements made by his top aides.
His aides say the charges criminalize all of the 47-year-old’s foundation’s activities since it was created in 2011.
Navalny, one of Vladimir Putin’s arch nemesis above, has claimed that Russian authorities are failing to provide him with proper medical care and expressed concern about his health.
One of Navalny’s accomplices, Daniel Kholodny, was transferred from a different prison to stand trial alongside him.
While incarcerated, Navalny spent months in a single cell, also known as a ‘punishment cell’, for alleged disciplinary infractions such as not buttoning his prison uniform properly, properly identifying himself to a guard or washing his face. a certain time.
His aides and supporters have accused prison authorities of failing to provide him with proper medical care and expressed concern over his poor health.
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