06:38 GMT +323 February 2019
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    Anastasia Vashukevich (Nastya Rybka)

    Belarusian Model Pleads Guilty to Sex Crimes in Thailand

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    Anastasia Vashukevich, a model from Belarus who made headlines last year when she claimed to have information on alleged Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election, pleaded guilty Tuesday in Thailand to charges related to holding a “sex training” seminar.

    Vashukevich, along with seven Russian defendants, including author and sex advocate Alexander Kirillov, pleaded guilty Tuesday to soliciting prostitution and forming and being members of a secret society. The group, which had been charged with prostitution and criminal conspiracy in April, pleaded not guilty in the charges in August and were still proclaiming their innocence earlier on Tuesday, according to multiple reports. 

    On Tuesday, the defendants were given suspended 18-month prison terms by Chief Judge Kasem Supasit in the Pattaya court. Because they had already spent nine months in prison, the judge released the defendants on parole and also waived their individual fines of 100,000 baht ($3,135).

    The group was involved in staging a so called "sex training session" in the Thai seaside resort town of Pattaya last February, Sputnik reported. Those detained were accused of illegally entering the country and staying there after the expiration of their visas, as well as of working in Thailand without a proper permit last February.

    Vashukevich made headlines after being arrested by Thai authorities, as she claimed to be the ex-mistress of Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska, a former associate of US President Donald Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort. 

    On her Instagram account, Vashukevich pleaded for US help, claiming that she witnessed multiple meetings in 2016 and 2017 between Deripaska and unidentified Americans. Although she refused to reveal the Americans' identifies, she claimed to have photographs of one of them, as well as more than an hour of audio recordings of the meetings.

    Deripaska, who denies any affair with Vashukevich, told CNN last March that Vashukevich's claims were "an attempt to politicize the accusations of the Thai police."

    "There have been endless fictitious stories told by her, all serving to distract the public from real violations, including very serious breaches of law of many countries," he told the media outlet.

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    Russiagate, police, sex crime, Thailand, United States, Russia
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