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Russian servicemen sentenced in space center hazing trial

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MOSCOW, November 12 (RIA Novosti) - Two Russian servicemen have been found guilty of the murder of a colleague at the Plesetsk space center, and sentenced to 11 and 14 years imprisonment respectively, military prosecutors said on Monday.

The men, Captain Viktor Bal and Warrant Officer Vadim Kalinin, launched a drunken attack on three soldiers, including Sergei Sinkonen, on August 15 at the space center, located in the north of Russia. After the beating, Sinkonen was placed in a dog kennel, where he was discovered the next morning. He later died of his injuries.

Bal and Kalinin were found guilty of grievous bodily harm leading to death, as well as abuse of office.

The issue of hazing in Russia's armed forces was highlighted last year by the case of Private Andrei Sychyov, who had both legs amputated after being beaten and tortured on New Year's Eve at his army unit in the south Urals city of Chelyabinsk.

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