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Exiled Lawyer for Navalny, Safronov Says Placed on Russia’s Wanted List

Lawyer Ivan Pavlov. Valery Sharifulin / TASS

A prominent Russian human rights lawyer who fled Russia to escape criminal charges has been placed on the country’s wanted list, he said Thursday.

Ivan Pavlov left Russia for the Caucasus republic of Georgia in early September after authorities charged him with disclosing details of an investigation into his former client, jailed journalist Ivan Safronov. Russian law enforcement briefly detained Pavlov in April and confiscated a number of documents during searches of his apartment.

According to Pavlov, Russian investigators issued an order last week to place him on a wanted list without notifying him or his lawyers.

“We learned about it from Ivan Safronov,” Pavlov wrote on the Telegram messaging app, referring to his one-time client who faces trial for treason.

“It’s not difficult to establish my location — just call me,” Pavlov said.

Pavlov has worked for high-profile clients including Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, who is serving a 2.5-year prison sentence on old embezzlement charges he denies.

Navalny was convicted upon returning to Russia earlier this year after being treated abroad for an August 2020 nerve-agent poisoning he blames on the Kremlin.

Pavlov himself was detained in April on charges of disclosing details of the treason investigation into Safronov, which he denies.

Authorities also declared Pavlov’s since-disbanded independent legal group Team 29 an “undesirable” organization with foreign links over the summer. 

The designation places Pavlov at risk of up to six years in prison.

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