Wed, 20 Jan 2021

The St. Petersburg City Court has sentenced military analyst Vladimir Neyelov to seven years in prison after convicting him of treason.

'The court found that Neyelov, for money, gave a German consulting firm information about the process of training and preparing operative agents of the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation,' the court said in a statement on July 2 after a closed trial.

The court added that Neyelov 'partially' admitted his guilt by arguing that the information he provided was not classified.

Neyelov, 30, was arrested in October 2018 and has been held in Moscow's Lefortovo remand prison.

Neyelov worked with Moscow's Center for Strategic Forecasting and specialized in Russia's private security firms, some of which carry out mercenary activities abroad in cooperation with Russian security forces.

He was often quoted in the media speaking about the Vagner security group, which is controlled by financier Yevgeny Prigozhin. The Vagner group has sent mercenaries to Ukraine, Syria, Libya, and other countries.

He also is the author or co-author of several books on the activities of Russian private security firms in various conflicts in the former Soviet space and in Afghanistan.

With reporting by the BBC

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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