A Russian court on Wednesday sentenced two of the perpetrators behind the deadly 1995 terrorist attack in Budyonnovsk that left more than 120 people dead and some 500 injured.
Led by Chechen warlord Shamil Basayev, around 200 heavily armed Chechen militants stormed the southern Russian town and held nearly 1,600 people hostage for six days during the First Chechen War.
On Wednesday, two of the militants, Ramzan Belyalov and Magomed Mazdaev, were handed 15 and 30 year prison sentences respectively. They were charged with carrying out terrorist attacks and taking hostages, among other crimes. The men said they were innocent.
"In the history of Russian justice, there has never been a more unjust verdict,” Mazdaev’s lawyer Ilyas Timishev was cited by the state-run TASS news agency as saying following the court’s verdict.
“We will of course protest this sentence.”
Around 30 people have been sentenced for the Budyonnovsk attack.
Basayev was killed by Russian special forces in 2006.