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Former Russian senator sentenced to life in prison — RT Russia & Former Soviet Union


Rauf Arashukov and his father, Raul, were found guilty of organizing several murders

The Moscow City Court on Tuesday sentenced former Russian senator Rauf Arashukov and his father, Raul, to life imprisonment in a high-profile murder case. The former lawmaker was arrested in 2019 while attending a parliamentary session.

The then prosecutor general, Yury Chaika, and the head of the investigative commission, Aleksandr Bastrykin, personally led the detention. The other senators voted to strip him of parliamentary immunity during the same session.

“The court sees no obstacle to sentencing Raul and Rauf Arashukov to life imprisonment”, the judge said Tuesday. The jury had already found the ex-senator and his father guilty of organizing the murders of the deputy head of a local youth movement, Aslan Zhukov, and an assistant to the head of the southern region of Karachay-Cherkessia, Fral Shebzukhov.

Only one juror found that the guilt of the two men had not been sufficiently proven and that they deserved clemency, according to the RIA Novosti news agency. Raul Arashukov was also found guilty of stealing more than 4.4 billion rubles ($62 million) from Russian energy giant Gazprom. In September, the jury also found the two men guilty of forming a criminal group to steal 30 billion rubles ($425 million) from the company.

The court seized several of the Arashukovs’ cars, including a Bently and a rare Soviet “Chaika” (seagull) vehicle. A total of 18 other suspects have been tried in connection with this case.

Both men denied their guilt. Rauf, 36, was described as Russia’s youngest senator during his tenure between 2016 and 2019, representing the Karachay-Cherkessia region. His father Raul was once a gas magnate.

Arashukov Jr. was exposed as one of the masterminds of a contract killing after a hitman from a group that carried out one of the murders turned himself in in August 2018. The senator’s arrest kickstarted what ended up being full-scale policing. operation involving searches in several Russian cities.

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