Moscow – Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman today defended the head of state’s decision to pardon the convicted murderer of a young student who, according to the Kremlin, washed away his guilt on the battlefield. The case was recently brought to the media’s attention by the outraged mother of Vera Pechtělevová, according to whom the killer of her 23-year-old daughter boasts pictures in uniform on social networks and enjoys military life. According to the verdict, Vladislav Kaňus was to spend 17 years in a prison camp with a strict regime for the murder of his ex-girlfriend, whom he tortured for hours before suffocating her in January 2020.
Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov – without mentioning Kanus’ name – said according to the Meduza server that the president’s pardon can be obtained in two ways. The standard way is for the pardon to be recommended to the head of state by a chain of relevant authorities: from the prison administration to the leadership of the region and the federal district and the central commission for these cases to the presidential office. According to Peskov, the second possibility is that “he will redeem his guilt with blood”. The Kremlin spokesman added that this also applies to people convicted of the most serious crimes. “They pay for crimes in blood on the battlefield, in assault brigades, under fire,” he added. The president’s spokesman declined further comment.
Kaņus pleaded not guilty before the trial, which ended last July. In July of this year, five policemen also heard the verdict, who ignored the phone calls of Kaňus’s neighbors, concerned by the screams of the tormented victim. According to the server, the police got away without real punishment: they received suspended sentences for negligence.
“I am not alone. Believe me, there are at least hundreds of such mothers. We live in different parts of our vast country. Some are afraid, some do not want (to publish their story), some have folded their hands in their laps, some have no physical or moral strength due to the statute of limitations (crime) ,” said Oxana Pechtělevová to the independent server Bereg. She realizes that she is fighting windmills herself. “No one will help us, no one will listen to us,” she said. According to her, “all the state media” is silent and the president, as his office confirmed, “pardoned the murderer, the torturer, the monster”, and that before the appeal process.
Meduza recalled that the mercenary Wagner’s (translated from Russian Vagnerov) group actively recruited prisoners into their ranks. The former leader of the group, Yevgeny Prigozhin, promised the new mercenaries that after half a year of service they would be pardoned by the head of state. It was later revealed that the prisoners had been pardoned by a secret decree even before they were sent to war. There are no official figures showing how many convicts were recruited for the war and pardoned. There are also no figures showing how many convicts lost their lives in the war and how many of them returned home from the war. But there are reports from various parts of Russia that ex-convicts, after returning from the fighting, are committing crimes again, even the most serious ones, the Bereg server added.
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