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Russia sentences opposition leader Navalny to 3.5 years in prison

A Moscow court orders Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny to 3.5 years in prison on charges that he violated the terms of his probation while he was recuperating in Germany from nerve-agent poisoning.

Navalny, the most prominent critic of President Vladimir Putin in Russia, had earlier denounced the proceedings as a vain attempt by the Kremlin to scare millions of Russians into submission.

The prison sentence stems from a 2014 embezzlement conviction that he has rejected as fabricated.

The 44-year-old Navalny was arrested on January 17 upon returning from his five-month convalescence in Germany from the attack, which he has blamed on the Kremlin. Russian authorities deny any involvement.

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