A conscript was sentenced to 24-1/2 years in prison by a Russian court on Thursday for killing eight people at a military base in 2019, a crime he said was provoked by bullying, the TASS news agency reported.
Ramil Shamsutdinov opened fire on servicemen at the base in the far eastern region of Zabaikalsk on Oct. 25 last year. He was detained shortly after the incident and admitted he had killed the eight.
The defence will decide whether to appeal once it has seen the court’s reasoning, the RIA news agency reported.
The case is embarrassing for the military, which has been revamped in recent years at great cost and says it has stamped out the Soviet-era problem of hazing – the bullying of conscripts by older soldiers.
A jury in the Chita region had said Shamsutdinov deserved a relatively lenient sentence, RIA reported.
His defence team said he was a victim of bullying. Shamsutdinov said in an open letter circulated by his lawyer on social media that he regretted he had been unable to restrain himself but he could not take any more mistreatment after his life was made “hell”.
In a separate trial in March, a court sentenced one of Shamsutdinov’s fellow servicemen to a suspended two-year sentence for beating soldiers, including Shamsutdinov, whom he once kicked, RIA reported.