Russian Opposition Leader Sentenced to 5 Years in Prison

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was found guilty of embezzlement and sentenced to five years in prison Thursday. Navalny, 37, an anti-corruption blogger and Moscow mayoral candidate is the most prominent leader to be tried in Russia since Soviet times. Navalny was found guilty of heading a group that embezzled $480,000 from a state-owned timber company in 2009. At the time, Navalny had been an unpaid advisor to a provincial governor in Kirov when he started an anti-corruption blog that gained a mass following and propelled him into the limelight. Navalny penned the phrase, referring to Vladimir Putin's United Russia party as "the party of crooks and thieves" and was a leader during the country's demonstrations in response to the parliamentary election results in late 2011.

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