|Wednesday September 16, 2015|
POSTED September 16, 2015Kyiv Post. The court acquitted four other defendants.
A Ukrainian skydiver uses the nickname Grisha Mustang took credit for the main act of painting the star adorning the Kotelnicheskaya Embankment skyscraper, and for hanging a Ukrainian flag on the building, reports the New Yorker’s Masha Gessen. After the act of vandalism was completed, the four skydivers “jumped off the building to draw attention to its new Ukrainian colors,” notes Gessen. Grisha Mustang, whose real name is apparently Pavel Ushevets, was arrested in absentia, but Ukraine has refused to extradite him.
Podrezov was convicted of staying on the roof as a lookout while Ushevets painted the skyscraper, though Ushevets claims he has never met any of the other defendants. The only defendant to concede partial guilt, Podrezov was sentenced to two years and three months in prison.
Wrote Gessen, “All five of the defendants have been listed as political prisoners by the leading Russian human rights organization, Memorial. This makes the four acquittals all the more remarkable: They would appear, at first glance, to run counter to the well-observed tendency of Russian courts to sentence political prisoners consistently, swiftly, and harshly.”