Moscow court on Thursday awarded railway worker to seven years in prison for posts on the Internet condemning the Russian bombing of Ukrainian cities.
63-year-old Mikhail Simonov was detained in the fall for anti-war comments on the Russian social network Vkontakte in March.
“Killing children and women, we sing songs on the First Channel [state TV]”, Simonov wrote. “We, Russia, have become godless. Forgive us, Lord!”
Simonov also captioned a photo with the ruins of the Mariupol Drama Theater with the phrase “Russian pilots are sick of children.”
The Timiraz District Court of Moscow found him guilty of spreading “fakes” about the Russian military, Mediazona writes.
Investigators claimed that Simonov acted out of “political hatred” of the Russian leadership and his “decision to use the Russian Armed Forces to normalize the socio-political situation in Ukraine.”
Last year, Russia criminalized the dissemination of information about the country’s military that deviates from the Kremlin’s narrative about what it calls its “special military operation” in Ukraine.
While the new law introduced up to 15 years in prison for publishing “knowingly false information” about the army, a judge on Thursday gave Simonov a lighter sentence of seven years in prison.
Simanov’s defense argued that he, as a Christian, expressed pacifist beliefs.
More than 500 people in Russia faced criminal responsibility for anti-war statements after Moscow launched an invasion of Ukraine, reports the human rights organization OVD-Info.