"The so-called Dzhankoy District Court, controlled by the occupation authorities in the temporarily occupied Crimea, has just handed down an illegal sentence to Yevhenii Dobrynskyi, a serviceman of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, for allegedly illegally crossing the state border of the Russian Federation and smuggling drugs," she wrote on her Facebook page on Wednesday, April 21.
She specified that Dobrynskyi had been sentenced to three years and six months of imprisonment in a general-security penal colony.
The ombudsman condemned the actions of the court controlled by the occupation authorities as the criminal case has been trumped up.
"Evidence provided to the court by the defense team during the court hearings shows that the Ukrainian serviceman is innocent," she said.
Denisova called on the international community to continue putting pressure on Russia so as to stop the illegal persecution and trials of Ukrainian citizens and to free all Kremlin prisoners.
"I consider it unacceptable to persecute our citizens for fulfilling their constitutional duty to protect the independence and territorial integrity of Ukraine, and I condemn the actions of the occupation authorities that continue to violate international treaties and norms of international law," she said.
Earlier reports said that Dobrynskyi disappeared early on May 30, 2020 near Ukraine's administrative border with Russia-occupied Crimea. A search operation did not yield any result. According to preliminary information published by the Ukrainian Military Law-Enforcement Service in the Ukrainian Armed Forces, traces of a struggle were seen near an observation post, so it is believed that the serviceman was abducted while on duty.
A few days later, Russia's FSB Federal Security Service stated that the Ukrainian serviceman had been detained and criminal charges had been brought against him "for illegally crossing Russia's border." On June 3, a court in occupied Crimea ruled to arrest Dobrynskyi.
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