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Fought for Ukraine and was tortured in captivity: British soldier wins court case against Russia

Natasha Kumar By Natasha Kumar Apr14,2024


Sean Pinner wins lawsuit against Russia over torture/Chris Eades

A former British soldier who fought alongside Ukrainian forces before being captured and tortured by Russian soldiers has won legal case against the Kremlin.

London lawyers and Ukrainian lawyers filed a lawsuit against a judge in the Solomyansky District Court of Kyiv in October, alleging that Russia owes Sean Pinner money for the way he was treated, when he was a prisoner of war, writes The Daily Mail.

Pinner signed up to serve in the Ukrainian army in 2018, rising through the ranks after nine years in the British army, where he fought in Bosnia and later as a volunteer against ISIS. He was captured by Russian troops during the siege of Mariupol in April 2022.

The “Supreme Court” of the self-proclaimed “Donetsk People's Republic” initially sentenced the former soldier and two other people to death. punishments But he was later released in a prisoner exchange with three other British soldiersin the agreement concluded with the mediation of Saudi Arabia and the former owner of “Chelsea” Roman Abramovich.

Pinner stated that during the five months of his captivity, his captors brutally beat him, tortured him with electric shocks and starved him . Such treatment, according to him, violated his human rights and gave him the right to compensation.

The Kyiv court ruled in his favor, recognizing that he suffered inhumane treatment, and ruled that Russia should pay him appropriate compensation.

Moscow is expected to ignore the decision, but the case could set a precedent for other POWs to file complaints against Russia – and Pinner has said he intends to pursue his case in the British courts.

Fought for Ukraine and was tortured in captivity: British soldier wins court case against Russia

Sean Pinner went through a “trial” in the “DPR”/Photo EPA

Sean said in an interview with The Sun: “Russia should be held accountable for the way it treated me and this is the first step”.

This sets a precedent for other victims of Russian aggression. All victims of the war must and will be able to hold Russia accountable for what it has done.

When Russia returns to the real world, they will have to solve these court cases… It is not about the present, but about the future, about the next year, 10 years, 20 years,
– he emphasized.

Later , after his release from Russian captivity, officials in Kyiv awarded Pinner with the Order of Courage.

In media appearances last year, Pinner's legal team acknowledged that the Kremlin would almost certainly ignore any court orders for compensation.

But they noted that in the years since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russian oligarchs have regularly used English courts to settle legal disputes in all areas of their lives. This includes commercial disputes and even divorce settlements.

As a result, Pinner's lawyers say there is a decade-old precedent of Russian judges enforcing decisions of English courts – and those decisions could have implications for years to come. Moreover, his case may inspire hundreds of other citizens of Ukraine and other foreign fighters to file similar lawsuits.

Aiden Aslin, one of the other Britons captured in Mariupol who once faced the death penalty, is expected to sue Russia in a Ukrainian court next week. Pinner said the lawsuit is not just about money: “This is not just about financial compensation. I want to send a message that the Russian state is responsible for its treatment of prisoners of war.”

Last year, he told how badly he was tortured by Russian kidnappers, claiming his “muscles were coming out of his body” and blood pouring from his legsafter the kidnappers attached clamps to him and then ran 200 volts of electricity through his body, leaving him unable to walk.

He recalled how Russian soldiers took him for 45 minutes to a dank office room, tied him up, stabbed him, cut his clothes and beat him, calling him a Nazi and ignoring his assurances of his innocence.


There he endured several “painful” blows, which caused his legs to swell. When he took off the thermal blanket, he saw that he was bleeding from the wounds on his body.

I screamed. And then 200 volts passed through me on the chair. I could no longer feel my legs. As soon as I got there, they taped my hands and feet to the chair, and then I felt the tape go to my little fingers… and that's when I knew exactly what it was,
he said.

We emphasize that sooner or later Russia will be responsible for each of its war crimes. Both against the civilian population and against prisoners of war.

Natasha Kumar

By Natasha Kumar

Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my 1-800-268-7116

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