MOSCOW (AP) — A Russian court has sentenced a man to more than two years in prison for painting a star on the spire of a Moscow skyscraper in the colors of the Ukrainian flag. Four co-defendants were acquitted.
The case reflects Russian objections to public displays of support for Ukraine, where Russian-backed separatists have been fighting the pro-Western government in Kiev since April 2014.
The court found Vladimir Podrezov guilty of painting the star on Aug. 20, 2014, ahead of Ukraine's Independence Day. He was sentenced to two years and three months in prison.
Four others, who were arrested after base-jumping off of the building on the same day, were acquitted. In issuing the ruling Thursday, the judge said there was some doubt they had assisted Podrezov, the Interfax news agency reported.