BREAKING UPDATE: Russian soldier on trial for war crimes says “I’m sorry”

A RUSSIAN soldier on trial for war crimes in Ukraine says he is ‘sorry’ for killing a 62-year-old civilian from the Sumy region of the war-torn country.

UPDATE 11.22 am (May 20)  – Vadim Shishimarin, the first Russian soldier on trial for war crimes in Ukraine, gave his last speech on Friday, May 20 before sentencing is expected to begin early next week.

“I’m sorry and sincerely repent. I was nervous the moment it happened. I didn’t want to kill. But it happened and I do not refuse it,” he said in the Solomensky District Court of Kyiv.

Shishimarin is accused of murdering a resident of the Sumy region, unofficially identified as Alexander Shelipov.

On Thursday, May 19, the soldier asked the wife of the Ukrainian civilian he killed for “forgiveness.”

“I know you won’t be able to forgive me, but I ask your forgiveness,” Shishimarin said during a short conversation with Katerina Chelipova, the widow of the civilian he shot to death.

Ukrainian prosecutors are requesting that Sergeant Vadim Shishimarin is given a life sentence after he pleaded guilty to shooting the unarmed civilian with a machine gun in the northeast Ukrainian village of Chupakhivka on February 28.

Earlier, Sgt. Vadim Shishimarin told the court that he was following the orders of “two officers” when he shot the man with an AK-47 through the open window of the car he and four of his comrades had stolen.

According to the soldier, he first refused the request from the officers, but then fired “three or four times” following pressure from his superiors.

“There was a man there, he was talking on the phone. Ensign Makeev ordered me to shoot. I refused. Then another soldier ordered me to shoot in a threatening tone, arguing that he would hand us over. I fired a short burst,” Shishimarin said.

Answering the judge’s question of whether he felt hatred for the victim, the soldier said: “I didn’t mean to kill him. I fired to get away from me.”

Sentencing is expected on Monday, May 23 at 12 pm.


UPDATE 4.42 pm (May 19) – Further transcripts have been released from the trial of Vadim Shishimarin, the first Russian soldier on trial for war crimes in Ukraine, including that of Private Ivan Maltisov, who surrendered along with Shishimarin.

Shishimarin, who asked for forgiveness from the wife of the Ukrainian civilian he killed, is charged with shooting an unarmed 62-year-old Ukrainian civilian.

Maltisov said that when they saw the man walking with his bicycle along the street and talking on his telephone, Shishimarin was ordered to kill the civilian.

“The officers ordered him to shoot, arguing that he could hand us over to the military. Vadim did not follow this order.

“The military man who was sitting next to him returned and shouted to him to follow the order, because we could be handed over to the military and we would not reach ours. We caught up with this civilian and Vadim fired under this pressure,” he said.

Another witness, Igor Dekun, said that he and his neighbours were standing near the house when automatic bursts rang out and a grey Volkswagen drove out from behind a turn into their street. People got scared and hid in the yard.

“Through the fence, I saw that a car with the Russian military drove past. I heard a shot. A few minutes later we heard a neighbour scream. Next to her lay the body of a man. He was lying on his back, his arms were outstretched, a phone was lying in his left hand, ”said the man, as reported by nv.ua.


UPDATE 4 pm (May 19) – Russian soldier Vadim Shishimarin, who is on trial at the Solomensky District Court of Kyiv for war crimes in Ukraine, has asked the wife of the Ukrainian civilian he killed for “forgiveness.”

“I know you won’t be able to forgive me, but I ask your forgiveness,” Shishimarin said during a short conversation with Katerina Chelipova, the widow of the civilian he shot to death.

On Wednesday, May 18, the 21-year-old pleaded guilty to shooting a 62-year-old man with a machine gun in the northeast Ukrainian village of Chupakhivka on February 28.

Sgt. Vadim Shishimarin told the court that he was following the orders of “two officers” when he shot the man with an AK-47 through the open window of the car he and four of his comrades had stolen.

According to the soldier, he first refused the request from the officers, but then fired “three or four times” following pressure from his superiors.

“There was a man there, he was talking on the phone. Ensign Makeev ordered me to shoot. I refused. Then another soldier ordered me to shoot in a threatening tone, arguing that he would hand us over. I fired a short burst,” Shishimarin said.

Answering the judge’s question of whether he felt hatred for the victim, the soldier said: “I didn’t mean to kill him. I fired to get away from me.”

According to BBC journalist Sarah Rainsford, who is following the session, Ms Chelipova direct questions toward the defendant as she stood in court: “Please tell me, why did you come? To protect us? From whom? From my husband whom you killed?”

“My husband was a tractor driver, we had no weapons at home. He was dressed as a civilian,” the woman said.

According to her account of the events, she heard the shots from the patio of their home and when she came out, she saw the defendant with the machine gun and the lifeless body of her husband.

Shishimarin could now face up to life imprisonment if convicted.


UPDATE 2.20 pm (May 18) – A 21-year-old Russian soldier pleaded guilty to shooting a Ukrainian civilian with a machine gun in the northeast Ukrainian village of Chupakhivka on February 28.

The hearing held on Wednesday, May 18 at a Kyiv district court was the first war crimes trial brought against a Russian soldier by Ukrainian officials.

The man, Vadim Shishimarin, was accused of driving into the village of Chupakhovka in the Sumy Region and firing several targeted shots at the head of the 62-year-old victim with a Kalashnikov assault rifle as the unarmed villager walked along the roadside.

Shishimarin could now face up to life imprisonment if convicted.

Earlier on Wednesday, May 18, Kremlin officials said they had ‘no information’ about Shishimarin’s trial in Ukraine.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said: “We still have no information. And the ability to provide assistance due to the lack of our diplomatic mission there is also very limited.”


ORIGINAL 11.30 am (May 14) – The first trial of a Russian soldier accused of killing a man from the Sumy Region started in Kyiv’s Solomenskyy district court on Friday, May 13.

According to the Prosecutor-General’s Office, the commander of the 4th Tank Kantemirovskaya Division of the Moscow Region’s military unit 32010 has been accused of war crimes including premeditated murder – part 2 of article 438 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine – after allegedly killing a 62-year-old Ukrainian civilian.

According to the investigation, the resident of the Irkutsk Region arrived in Ukraine as part of the Russian army. His convoy was broken up by servicemen of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. While escaping, he and four of his comrades-in-arms fired on a private car with submachine guns and stole it.

Using the stolen car, the occupants drove into the village of Chupakhovka in the Sumy Region. On the way, they saw an unarmed villager walking along the roadside with his bicycle and talking on the phone, according to the country’s Prosecutor General.

The defendant fired several targeted shots through the open window of the car with a Kalashnikov assault rifle at the head of the 62-year-old victim. The man died on the spot just a few dozen metres from his home.

The defendant is currently in custody. The next hearing is scheduled for May 18, 2022.

The trial of one of Putin’s soldiers is put of continued Ukrainian investigations into war crimes committed by Russian forces in Ukraine.

Ukraine’s Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova said that as of Friday, May 13, Ukraine had “over 11000 ongoing cases of war crimes and already 40 suspects.”

Venediktova said she is “confident that in the nearest future we will see other cases being transferred to courts and perpetrators appearing before judges. We will ensure that these cases are brought to their logical end.”


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Written by

Matthew Roscoe

Originally from the UK, Matthew is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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