Former Commander-in-Chief of Land Forces can be imprisoned once again
The Russian Supreme Court considered Vladimir Chirkin’s sentence commutation illegal.
The Russian Supreme Court overturned the decision of commutation of the former Commander-in-Chief of Land Forces, the Colonel-General Vladimir Chirkin’s sentence, according to which the real term for corruption was replaced to a fine. Thus, the Court upheld the appeal of the Prosecutor's Office which insisted on the punishment of 5 years in prison, Interfax reported.
It is to be recalled that in June this year the Moscow District Military Court upheld the verdict against Chirkin handed out in December 2015. Then, the court replaced the sentence to the Colonel-General by a fine of 90 thousand rubles, reclassified his actions as fraud and released from custody. Also he was freed from the ban to hold publis offices.
As the CrimeRussia previously reported, in 2013, investigators charged the Commander-in-Chief of Land Forces of the Russian Federation Vladimir Chirkin with receiving a large bribe. As further established by the court, the Colonel-General for a bribe of more than 450 thousand rubles promised his friend who was a retired Major to help to provide him with an apartment in the Moscow Region. But when the man sold all his possessions, gave Chirkin’s people the money, and tried to settle his family in the provided apartment, it turned out that the apartment is already occupied by another family of a retired officer. Then, the retired Major, who found himself without a specified property, appealed to law enforcement agencies.
In August 2015, the Moscow Garrison Military Court found Vladimir Chirkin guilty of accepting bribes, sentenced him to 5 years of imprisonment in a colony of strict regime and deprived the convicted of the high military rank. However, in December of the same year, the Moscow District Military Court revised the sentence and changed the qualification of Chirkin’s crime. On the basis of this decision, he was convicted under Art. 159 of the Criminal Code – Swindling, as a result of which Chirkin got his rank of the General-Colonel back, all the decorations and the punishment in the form of serving in a colony of strict regime was replaced by a fine of 90 thousand rubles. The court at the Chirkin’s request removed his criminal record prematurely.
Chirkin is a military General, who has served in the Armed Forces of the USSR and then Russia for 43 years, rose through the ranks from a Platoon Commander to the Commander-in-Chief of Land Forces. He fought in the flash points, has a concussion. He was awarded with four medals, including For merits before Fatherland of IV degree and commanded a parade on the Red Square in Moscow on May 9, 2013.
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A spokesperson of the Prosecutor's office said that the ECHR had not studied all the materials of the criminal case, so they were offered not to overturn the verdict, but to send the case for a new review in court.