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Ukrainian Kostiantyn Shyring Accused of ‘Espionage’ Died in Russian Penal Colony

Mr.Kostiantyn Shyring, aged 61, sentenced to 12 years on the charges of ‘espionage’, died in Penal Colony No 5, City of Novotroitsk, Orenburg Region, Russia, where he was serving an unlawful sentence.

This is reported by the CHRG citing own sources in the colony.

According to the human rights defenders, Mr.Shyring needed a heart surgery, sought treatment, but he had not been operated.

The fact of Shyring’s death has not been confirmed yet by the Penal Colony No 5 administration, the procedure requires an investigation to be carried out.

“Kostiantyn needed medical care due to heart disease, but he was not treated. Not treating our citizens in Russian prisons is not something unique, this is a well-established practice. The penal colony administration is accountable for his death. For this reason all mechanisms to release the Ukrainian citizens detained by Russia, must be sought for and activated, because the conditions in the penal colonies of the Russian Federation are a real threat to life,” emphasized Ms.Olha Skrypnyk, Head of CHRG.

  • Earlier the Crimean Human Rights Group reported that on April 15, 2020, the FSB of the Russian Federation announced the detention of ‘Ukrainian Intelligence and Sabotage Group’ members in Crimea that was allegedly composed of Ms.Tatiana Kuz’menko, “a Russian servicewoman suspected of disclosing the National Security information” and Mr.Kostiantyn Shyring, a Ukrainian citizen, suspected of “carrying out espionage activities as assigned by the Ukrainian intelligence service”. According to the Russian agency, criminal cases “of high treason and espionage” were initiated.
  • According to the FSB, Ms.Kuz’menko was a warrant officer in the unit, and allegedly informed Mr.Shyring about the number of regiment personnel, missiles and other arms, their deployment locations, etc., while he, according to the “investigation”, allegedly transferred this information to the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine.
  • Mr.Shyring suffered from cardiovascular disease. He addressed several times the administration of the Pre-Trial Detention Center, asking for treatment. The result was that the administration moved him from cell to cell several times, with the detention conditions in the next one being worse than in the previous one.
  • On 14 October, 2021, the “Supreme Court of Crimea” sentenced Kostiantyn Shyring to 12 years in the maximum-security regime penal colony. In the debate, the prosecutor asked for 14 years’ sentence, and the defence asked for acquittal. Mr.Shyring himself also asked for acquittal, saying that he was “slandered and all the blame was put on him.”
  • On 25 December 2022 the 3Rd Court of Appeal in Sochi upheld the sentence for Kostiantyn Shyring.
  • On 1 June 2022 Kostiantyn Shyring was reported to have arrived at the colony in Orenburg Region, after over 2-month’s transportation period. Mr.Shyring wrote that harsh conditions had affected his health, “though nobody cares. I have been taken away absolutely all medicines and a tonometer”.
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