Prosecutors in St. Petersburg are looking for two defendants in the ‘Network’ case to be given up to nine years behind bars. Yuly Boyarshinov, 28, and Viktor Filinkov, 25, are accused of being part of a terrorist organization.
According to investigators, Kazakhstani national Filinkov and Russian citizen Boyarshinov have been members of the ‘Set’ (meaning Network) anarchist terrorism community since 2016. In 2017 and 2018, several alleged members of the group were arrested in Penza and St. Petersburg, including these two men.
The prosecution alleges that they had planned to carry out terrorist attacks during both the 2018 FIFA World Cup and the 2018 presidential election. According to law enforcement officers, the two defendants took part in training, learning to handle weapons, and preparing improvised explosive devices.
On February 10, 2020, seven convicted ‘Network’ members from Penza received sentences of up to 18 years in jail. None of them pleaded guilty to terrorism, and most claimed that they only confessed after being tortured during interrogation.
In St. Petersburg, the prosecution has requested that Filinkov and Boyarshinov serve six years and nine years, respectively, for their alleged participation in the terrorist group. Boyarshinov admits his guilt, but Filinkov denies his, claiming that his initial confession was given while he was tortured with an electric stun gun.
Boyarshinkov claims that he joined the setup as an anti-fascist but soured on it when he realized its true nature. Another member of the ‘Network’ St. Petersburg cell, Igor Shishkin, was sentenced to three-and-a-half years in early 2019, after pleading guilty.
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