A Russian national was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment after being found guilty of firearms charges on Tuesday by Larnaca criminal court.
Boris Satushiev, 57, was convicted of offences including illegal possession of firearms, possession of explosives, possession of objects constructed or adapted for delivering a harmful liquid or gas.
The court heard that the accused, a military school graduate, first arrived in Cyprus in 2010, visiting the island a total of 13 times by 2012. In the last four years he worked here as a financial consultant between Cyprus and Russia.
On March 10 this year Larnaca CID visited the home of Omiros Leonides in Livadia to arrest him and conduct a search in connection with offences involving conspiracy to commit an indictable offence, conspiracy to subvert the course of justice, witness influence, interfering with judges and intervention in judicial proceedings.
Satushiev opened the door and after being informed by police of why they were there, gave them his details. In a search of the room he was staying in officers found a black bag containing a replica handgun with a magazine. On being questioned the
Russian told police that the gun was not real, after which it and the bag were taken as evidence.
Also, found in the room were a pistol, a sawn off shotgun, 13 shotgun cartridges and five other cartridges along with ten other modified ones in homemade containers.
Various homemade weapons made with blades and adhesive tape were also found, along with a leather case containing three knives with 14cm blades.
The 57-year-old told officers that everything they found belonged to him.
From inquiries made through Interpol, it was found that Satushiev was wanted for fraud by the Russian authorities since July 2014. On further questioning he claimed he was a member of the Russian secret services, which necessitated a further search of the Livadia house in which he was residing.
On March 11 a police search found four mobile phones, four laptops, a cardboard container with an air pistol, a metal container with a number of ball-bearings and a briefcase containing four 1.5 litre soft drink bottles filled with a flammable liquid on which solid firelighters had been attached.
The judge said the case was very serious, noting that the nature of the offences committed by the man, which he had admitted to, always attracted the imposition of severe penalties.
As mitigating factors court took into consideration the defendant’s clean criminal record, his personal circumstances, his immediate admission to the police and the court and his admission that the objects found were his thus absolving his former co-defendant. Also, taken into consideration was the non-judicial punishment he will suffer from the military in his country due to the offences he committed in a foreign country.
The court imposed a three-year sentence for the charges relating to the illegal possession of category D firearms, three years on charges of possession of a category A weapon, one year for the air pistol, a year and a half for possession of explosives without authorisation and one year for possession of an object constructed or adapted for evacuation or launching of a harmful liquid or gas, chemical substance or the like.
The sentences will run concurrently and start from March 11 this year since when he has been in custody.