Suspended sentence for Russian cult leader


A Russian court handed down a suspended prison sentence to the leader of an anti-Semitic cult.

The leader of Toward God’s Kingdom was found guilty of forming an extremist group and inciting ethnic hatred in the Astrakhan district near Russia’s southern border with Georgia, according to a report from the SOVA Information-Analytical Center. He was given a two-year suspended prison sentence.

Prosecutors accused Sergei Pospelov and three others – a doctor, an engineer and a teacher at an aviation institute who are being tried separately – of forming a group that collected anti-Semitic and extremist literature, the Regnum news agency reported.

The cult then sought to disseminate that literature through their workplaces, passing it on to students and co-workers, according to Regnum.

Prosecutors charged that the cult began in 2002.

Pospelov arranged for the rental of space for the group to meet. He also provided literature to its members that advocated genocide, deportation and other acts against Jews.

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