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Prison Sentence Reduced for Russian Physicist Convicted of Treason

Russia's Supreme Court has reduced the sentence handed down to a former engineer convicted of high treason from 14 years to six years in a maximum security penal colony, the RIA Novosti news agency reported Thursday.

Gennady Kravtsov, a satellite engineer who worked for Russia's GRU military intelligence agency between 1990 and 2005, was arrested for sending a job application to a Swedish defense company five years after his resignation.

He repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, but a Moscow City Court sentenced him to 14 years in prison during a closed-door hearing in November 2015. Amid scores of similar treason convictions in the country last year, the case was one of the most-publicized by independent Russian media.

After the Supreme Court ruled to reduce Kravtsov's sentence, the prisoner's family members who had attended the hearing broke into applause, RIA Novosti reported.

The defense sought to have Kravtsov cleared of all charges and released, and will continue to appeal, the engineer's lawyer Ivan Pavlov was quoted by RIA Novosti as saying.

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