Beaten Russian Reporter Convicted of Slander

By: E&P Staff

Daily Mail Reporter

A Russian journalist who lost a leg and is unable to speak following a brutal ‘retaliation’ beating has been convicted of slander after accusing a local politician of an earlier attack.

Mikhail Beketov is one of several reporters who have been beaten up after writing reports about alleged corruption over road building plans near a Moscow suburb.

After his car was blown up in 2007, Mr Beketov, who was not injured in the blast, claimed that Vladimir Strelchenko, the mayor of Khimki, ordered the bombing.

A year later two thugs set upon him near his home, leaving him for dead in the snow.

The journalist’s right leg had to be amputated and his voicebox was left irreparably damaged.

The culprits were never brought to justice.

Instead, Mr Strelchenko took Mr Beketov to court and yesterday the Khimkinskaya Pravda reporter was convicted of slander.

A judge in Khimki issued a 5,000 ruble ($162.58 USD) fine but said Mr Beketov didn’t have to pay because of a technicality.

Mr Beketov will appeal the decision which has been dismissed as flawed by his supporters who accuse Mr Strelchenko of ‘politcal terror’.

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