Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has been transferred from Pokrov penal camp to another penal institution. Navalny’s lawyers say they don’t know where he was taken. The transfer would have to do with a verdict that came into effect on Tuesday.
“Today, Navalny’s lawyer in the penal colony in Pokrov was told that Navalny was no longer being held there, he was transferred to a colony with a strict regime, but we were not told which one,” said Olga Mikhailova, a lawyer for Navalny, against the Russian news agency TASS.
Navalny will have to serve the sentence he received in March this year in the new penal institution. He was then sentenced to nine years for alleged fraud and contempt of court. He must serve that sentence in an extra-security prison, with a stricter regime than in the Pokrov penal colony, where he served a prison sentence of two and a half years.
Prominent Kremlin Critic
This previous prison sentence was imposed because he allegedly violated conditions from a previous conviction. Navalny calls the convictions politically motivated and says the Kremlin is trying to keep him out of politics. In 2020, Navalny was poisoned with the nerve agent novichok, an attack from which he had to recover in a German hospital. He nevertheless returned to Russia and was arrested immediately upon his return in January 2021.
Two months later, he was transferred from Moscow prison to Pokrov penal camp. Even then his lawyers were not informed. The nine-year sentence that Navalny is currently serving may not be his last. According to Navalny, a new criminal case has been opened against him, in which he risks another 15 years in prison.