Lugansk Region’s Novoaidarsky District Court has sentenced Russian Viktor Ageev, who was detained in the summer of 2017 by Ukrainian servicemen in Donbass, to 10 years in jail, his lawyer Viktor Chevguz reported.
"Novoaidarsky District Court of the Lugansk Region has sentenced Russian Viktor Ageev to 10 years of imprisonment," he wrote on Facebook.
The lawyer added that the Russian was charged with cooperation with the forces of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) which is recognized as a terror organization in Ukraine. He is also charged with illicit possession and carrying of a gun and munitions. According to Chevguz, the verdict is too strict and the defense intends to appeal against it both in terms of the crime classification and the form of punishment.
Ageev was detained by Ukrainian military near Lugansk in June 2017. The Ukrainian Security Service says that he is a Russian serviceman who joined the LPR forces in March 2017 and performed the functions of a machine gunner in a separate armored cavalry troop. According to the Russian Defense Ministry, Ageev has never served as a volunteer in the Russian Armed Forces and left the compulsory military service in the prescribed order in 2016. The Russian Defense Ministry called the statement on Ageev’s volunteer service "a story made up by Ukrainian propagandists."