Russian officer sentenced to 6.5 years for desertation
A Russian security officer who fled the country because he objected to the invasion of Ukraine has been sentenced to six-and-a-half years in high-security prison, the Taiga.info news website reported on Friday.
Federal Protective Service Major Mikhail Zhilin, 36, fled to Kazakhstan last year when Russia announced a conscription campaign, illegally crossing the border through woods while his wife and children drove through a checkpoint.
Zhilin sought refugee status in the former Soviet republic but his request was denied and authorities there stopped him from leaving for Armenia.
Kazakhstan handed him over to Russia late last year, leading to the rare conviction of an officer for desertion.