The Moscow Military District Court acquitted last Friday Dzhabrail and Ibragim Makhmudov, brothers from Chechnya, and former police officer Sergei Khadzhikurbanov of involvement in the journalist's murder, one day after the jury unanimously concluded that prosecutors had failed to prove the defendants' guilt.
Judge Yevgeny Zubov ruled that the case be referred back to the Investigation Committee at the Russian Prosecutor General's Office and said that the verdict could be appealed within a 10-day period.
Novaya Gazeta reporter Politkovskaya, who gained international recognition for her reports of atrocities against civilians in the troubled Caucasus republic of Chechnya, was gunned down in an elevator in her Moscow apartment building in October 2006, in what police described as a contract killing.
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Some people are trying to make the reality in Russia at least a bit more humane. The amnesty should apply not only to persons involved in high-profile cases, but also to individuals who are not as well-known. It is better to set free at least some of the individuals who deserve to be released than no one at all.