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Russian Businessman Fined for Delivering Pizza by Drone

Drone delivers pizza in Syktyvkar, northern Russia.

The director of a Russian drone delivery company has been fined 50,000 rubles ($1,200) for the unlicensed transportation of pizza by air in June.

The CEO of Copter Express, Oleg Ponfilenok, posted an image of the official fine paperwork he received on the VKontakte social networking site Tuesday, saying he was being punished for the unlicensed delivery of "cargo" by an unmanned aerial vehicle in the northern city of Syktyvkar.

In June, a local pizzeria made use of Copter Express to deliver a pizza by drone, to much applause from witnesses in the city's main square.

Shortly after the stunt, the city transportation prosecutor's office launched a probe into the novel delivery method. The Russian Air Transport Code stipulates that the owners of unmanned aerial vehicles must seek permission to fly them from their local branch of the Federal Air Transport Agency, and that failure to do so is punishable by a fine.

Ponfilenok said he would appeal the ruling, arguing on VKontakte that it is not possible to obtain a license for transporting cargo using an unmanned aerial vehicle, and that his drone doesn't correspond to any of the categories of certified aerial vehicles.

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