A jury in Moscow has acquitted a suspect charged with murdering a gay man at the Kursky train station. According to the website Mediazona, prosecutors say Anton Berezhnoi used a knife to attack two men returning home from a gay nightclub. One of the victims received light injuries while the other died at the scene.
During the trial, Berezhnoi partly confessed to the crime but said he didn’t plan to kill anyone, claiming that the victim impaled himself on the knife. The jury acquitted him of murder charges but convicted him of felony battery.
Members of the city’s LGBTQ community have said they believe the attack was directly related to the victims’ sexual orientation. “There were shouts of ‘Faggot bastards!’ and there was aggression. It’s highly likely that it was tied to [our] orientation. We were dressed casually. It’s possible that he was following us. We were walking from a nightclub,” the surviving victim told the television station Dozhd.