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Uzbek Court Sentences Opposition Leader to Prison for Economic Crimes

An opposition leader in Uzbekistan has been sentenced to more than 10 years in prison for a variety of financial crimes.

Tashkent court judge Zokirjon Isayev found Sandjar Umarov guilty of organizing a criminal group, and economic crimes that resulted in a loss of income for the country. The court ordered Umarov to pay more than $8 million in fines. He denies the charges, and his lawyer said he would appeal the verdict.

Umarov heads the opposition group Sunshine Uzbekistan.

Last week, another activist from the Sunshine group was sentenced to 10 years in prison for tax evasion and other financial crimes.

Human rights groups say that case was politically motivated.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.