Kremlin critic charged over criticizing fighting in Ukraine

July 12, 2022 GMT
This photo taken from video provided by Ostorozhno_novosti Telegram channel, Ilya Yashin, Russian opposition activist and a municipal deputy of the Krasnoselsky district, centre left, signs a document next to his apartment in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, July 12, 2022. Russian opposition politician Ilya Yashin was seen at a search at his apartment on Tuesday evening. According to Yashin's lawyer, the Russian Investigative Committee opened a criminal case against him of spreading deliberately false information about the Russian Army. (Ostorozhno_novosti Telegram channel via AP)
This photo taken from video provided by Ostorozhno_novosti Telegram channel, Ilya Yashin, Russian opposition activist and a municipal deputy of the Krasnoselsky district, centre left, signs a document next to his apartment in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, July 12, 2022. Russian opposition politician Ilya Yashin was seen at a search at his apartment on Tuesday evening. According to Yashin's lawyer, the Russian Investigative Committee opened a criminal case against him of spreading deliberately false information about the Russian Army. (Ostorozhno_novosti Telegram channel via AP)
This photo taken from video provided by Ostorozhno_novosti Telegram channel, Ilya Yashin, Russian opposition activist and a municipal deputy of the Krasnoselsky district, centre left, signs a document next to his apartment in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, July 12, 2022. Russian opposition politician Ilya Yashin was seen at a search at his apartment on Tuesday evening. According to Yashin's lawyer, the Russian Investigative Committee opened a criminal case against him of spreading deliberately false information about the Russian Army. (Ostorozhno_novosti Telegram channel via AP)
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This photo taken from video provided by Ostorozhno_novosti Telegram channel, Ilya Yashin, Russian opposition activist and a municipal deputy of the Krasnoselsky district, centre left, signs a document next to his apartment in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, July 12, 2022. Russian opposition politician Ilya Yashin was seen at a search at his apartment on Tuesday evening. According to Yashin's lawyer, the Russian Investigative Committee opened a criminal case against him of spreading deliberately false information about the Russian Army. (Ostorozhno_novosti Telegram channel via AP)
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This photo taken from video provided by Ostorozhno_novosti Telegram channel, Ilya Yashin, Russian opposition activist and a municipal deputy of the Krasnoselsky district, centre left, signs a document next to his apartment in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, July 12, 2022. Russian opposition politician Ilya Yashin was seen at a search at his apartment on Tuesday evening. According to Yashin's lawyer, the Russian Investigative Committee opened a criminal case against him of spreading deliberately false information about the Russian Army. (Ostorozhno_novosti Telegram channel via AP)

Russian prosecutors on Tuesday brought criminal charges against another opposition figure who has criticized Russia’s military campaign in Ukraine, his lawyer said.

Ilya Yashin was due to be released after spending 15 days in jail on charges of failing to obey police. Instead, Yashin was charged under a new law making it a crime to spread false information about the military, said his lawyer, Vadim Prokhorov. It carries a potential sentence of up to 15 years in prison.

Prosecutors searched Yashin’s Moscow apartment on Tuesday evening, and video taken at the scene shows that Yashin was present during the search.

Russia has cracked down on those who criticize what it calls the “special military operation” in Ukraine. Vladimir Kara-Muza, a well-known opposition figure, was arrested in April and charged under the same law.

Yashin, a member of a Moscow municipal council, was detained in late June in a city park, and police said he grabbed one officer by the uniform and insulted them. Yashin said the police approached him while he was sitting on a bench with a friend and demanded he go with them without explanation.