A former soldier of Ukraine's National Guard Vitaliy Markiv - accused of involvement in the murder of Italian photographer Andrea Rocchelli in the Donbas in 2014 - was sentenced to 24 years in prison by the Italian court in the city of Pavia. This was reported from the courtroom by the correspondent of Hromadske.
The decision was announced by the court without reasoning. Markiv was also ordered to pay compensation to the family of the deceased photographer. After the verdict was announced, Markiv's lawyer fell ill, and an ambulance was called in. Markiv himself exclaimed "Glory to Ukraine" after the last word of the judge, in response "Glory to the heroes" was heard from the hall. Also, someone from the hall shouted "We love you", reports the correspondent of Hromadske.
It should be noted that the Italian prosecutor Andrea Zanoncelli requested that Markiv be sentenced to 17 years in prison.
For his final remark, Markiv said that he was a Ukrainian military, a simple soldier, a patriot, and added that he would always defend Ukraine.
Interior Minister of Ukraine Arsen Avakov has already stated that the verdict will be challenged.
"24 years for Vitaliy Markiv is an unfair and shameful decision of the Italian court. It will be challenged. Our Guard and Ukraine are not to blame for the death of the reporter Rocchelli," said Avakov.