May 15, 2008 / 6:51 PM / in 10 years

Moscow court jails bombers over market race attack

MOSCOW, May 15 (Reuters) - A court in Moscow jailed eight Russian men on Thursday for a bomb attack in 2006 that killed 14 people in a busy suburban market popular with immigrants.

The bomb tore through the sprawling Cherkizovsky market on Moscow’s eastern fringe in the middle of a working day in August, just as immigrants from former Soviet Central Asia and the Caucasus had begun to crowd the stalls.

Prosecutors said the guilty men were members of a racist group called "The Saviour" which targeted migrants. The court sentenced four of the men to life imprisonment.

"The sentence was imposed fairly and in proportion to the offence," an official from the Prosecutor-General’s office told the ITAR-Tass news agency.

Two other men received sentences of 20 years and 13 years and another two were jailed for two years each.

Racism spread in Russia during the chaotic years after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

Energy wealth has enriched Russia over the last decade and attracted thousands of migrants from the former Soviet Union who mostly work in city markets, on building sites, sweeping roads and painting fences.

Resentment against immigrants has grown in some of the more marginalised segments of Russian society and human rights groups have said that attacks on migrants in Russia are increasing. (Writing by James Kilner; Editing by Jon Boyle)

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