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Ex-Official Jailed 12 Years for Sending Ukraine ‘State Secrets’

A court in southern Russia has sentenced a former regional administration official to 12 years in prison on charges of providing Ukraine with state secrets, local media reported Tuesday.

The Krasnodar Region Court found the unidentified former official guilty of treason and handed him a 12-year sentence in a maximum-security prison.

He was accused of transferring unspecified information that could be “used against the security of the Russian Federation” as an “agent” of Ukraine’s SBU intelligence agency.

Krasnodar’s board of judges rejected the defense team’s appeal and allowed the original verdict to enter into force, the court said.

The local Telegram channel Krasnodar Teletype identified the defendant as former regional environmental administration official Artur Katrychko, 33.

Other outlets reported on Katrychko’s arrest in August 2022.

According to Krasnodar Teletype, Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) determined that Katrychko had contacted the Ukrainian special services and operated under the pseudonym “Archie.”

Treason cases are heard behind closed doors in Russia as they deal with what authorities consider classified information.

Espionage charges carry a maximum prison sentence of 20 years. Amendments that President Vladimir Putin signed into law in April increased the maximum penalty for “high treason” from 20 years to life imprisonment.

The United Nations expressed alarm last month over the growing number of treason and espionage arrests made in Russia since Moscow invaded Ukraine last year.

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