A court in Moscow has sentenced Ilya Pyanzin to 10 years in a high security penal colony for plotting to kill Vladimir Putin on the instructions of Chechen terrorists.
The convict had entered a plea deal and in accordance with Russian law received a prison sentence that cannot be longer than two thirds of the maximum prescribed by the Criminal Code.
Pyanzin's trial was partially closed to the press and public. According to scarce media reports prosecutors asked for Pyanzin to be sentenced to 15 years in a penal colony for banditry and conspiracy to kill a state official. The man told the court of his sincere remorse and asked for leniency, but the judge opted for the maximum term allowed by the law.
Pyanzin’s name first hit the headlines in January 2012 when a powerful blast destroyed a part of an apartment block in the Ukrainian city of Odessa. Investigators established that three men were preparing a bomb that accidentally went off killing one of them and wounding the other two – Russian citizen Adam Osmayev and Kazakhstan citizen Ilya Pyanzin – who were detained.
The survivors were initially charged with illegal possession of explosives and making an explosive device as well as inflicting damage to other persons’ property. However, Osmayev soon told law enforcers that the group was planning to assassinate Vladimir Putin who at that time was chairing the Russian government.
According to him, the three men wanted to explode a car bomb in Moscow targeting Putin’s motorcade.
He also said that the attack was ordered by the leader of Chechen militants and Russia’s most wanted terrorist Doku Umarov.
Russia’s Federal Security Service demanded the suspects were handed over to Russia for trial, but Osmayev’s extradition has been contested by the European Court of Human Rights and he remained in Odessa to be charged with participation in a terrorist group, conspiracy to commit a terrorist attack, with illegal bomb making, manslaughter and using counterfeit documents.
Pyanzin was extradited to Russia in August 2012 and put on trial. After the FSB pressed charges of conspiracy to kill a state official he immediately agreed to cooperate and gave evidence naming his former accomplices and organizers of the attack.
Osmayev’s trial in Odessa continues. According to Kommersant-Ukraine daily the suspect has retracted all his confessions and is currently pleading not guilty on all charges.