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Austrian military convicted of espionage in favor of Russia, freed

The land court of Salzburg, released, retired Austrian military convicted of espionage in favor of Russia, taking into account the time he spent in prison, told RIA Novosti the representative of the court Peter EGGER.

Earlier Tuesday, a jury found a former Austrian Colonel convicted of divulging state secrets, secret intelligence activities at the expense of Austria and the intentional disclosure of military secrets. According to the court, they already served a period of pre-trial detention applies to the sentence. In the event of the entry of the verdict the accused after serving half of sentence can be released conditionally.

"The court held that installed three years convicted enough to serve half, and then he can be paroled. He also read out a year and a half spent in jail. Thus, he was released. This decision is due to the fact that he no longer poses any threat," said EGGER.

The interviewee explained that the verdict has not yet entered into force and the Prosecutor's office within three days can appeal against it in higher instance - the higher regional court of Linz.

"If the prosecution does not appeal the verdict, it will enter into force, and everything will remain unchanged," reported EGGER.

The Prosecutor's office of Salzburg November 8, 2019 presented to the ex-Colonel charges that he engaged in espionage for at least 25 years, worked for the secret intelligence service to the detriment of Austria, disclose state and military secrets.

Chancellor of Austria Sebastian Kurz in November 2018, said a retired Colonel of the armed forces of Austria is suspected of intelligence activities in favor of Russia from 1992 to 2018.

Austrian President Alexander van der Bellen urged not to dramatize the situation, Kurtz later said that Vienna focuses on the dialogue with Russia in the future this will not change, but the suspicion of espionage will always be criticized.