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Military guru gets 7-year prison term for passing classified FSB data to German firm

ST. PETERSBURG, July 2. /TASS/. A St. Petersburg court has sentenced Vladimir Neelov to seven years in a maximum-security prison for treason and transmitting information on training FSB staff to a German company, reporters were told by the united city courts’ press service.

“The court sentenced [Neelov] to seven years in a high-security prison,” the statement said.

The press service noted that the military expert was found guilty under the Article 275 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (high treason). The court hearing was held behind closed doors. As the court established, the expert sold classified information on the training of FSB field operatives to a German consulting firm. The defendant admitted partial guilt stating to the court that he did not believe that the data he had handed over was secret.

The convicted defendant is a military specialist from the Strategic Conjuncture Center known for his commentaries on the activity of private military contractors. He was arrested in November 2019 by Moscow’s Lefortov court. Later the case was transferred to the St. Petersburg city court.

According to open sources, the convicted defendant graduated from St. Petersburg State University’s International Relations department. He focused mainly on private military contractors, aspects of modern warfare, military doctrines and strategy, and authored a number of articles on strategic studies as well as military and political analyses.

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