(Removes erroneous reference to a sentencing request by the
jury in paragraph 3)
* Prosecutors want 2 of 5 convicted men jailed for life
* Request sentences of 15-22 years for three others
* Authorities have not found who had Kremlin critic killed
By Steve Gutterman
MOSCOW, May 27 Russian prosecutors asked a judge
on Tuesday for life sentences for two men convicted of the 2006
murder of journalist Anna Politkovskaya, whose killing deepened
Western concerns about the rule of law under President Vladimir
Life became the maximum sentence for murder in the 1990s
when the country imposed a moratorium on the death penalty.
A jury last week convicted five men of a murder that drew
international attention to the risks faced by Kremlin critics.
The two facing life in jail are Rustam Makhmoudov, who was
convicted of shooting Politikovskaya in her Moscow apartment
building, and his uncle Lom-Ali Gaitukayev, found guilty of
organising the logistics of the crime, the RIA news agency said.
Prosecutors asked the judge to sentence Makhmoudov's
brothers Dzhabrail and Ibragim, who tracked Politkovskaya on the
day of the shooting, to 19 and 15 years respectively, and want a
22-year sentence for former policeman Sergei Khadzhikurbanov.
Politkovskaya, who was 48 when she was shot while returning
home after shopping for groceries, was best known for her
revealing reporting on human rights violations in the North
Caucasus province of Chechnya.
Rights activists and relatives of Politkovskaya say those
convicted were merely carrying out orders and that justice will
not be done until the person behind her contract-style killing
is identified and convicted.
Federal investigators said last week that the authorities
were doing all they could to identify and arrest that person,
but Kremlin critics doubt that will ever happen because of
suspicions the trail could lead too close to the government.
Ibragim and Dzhabrail Makhmudov and Khadzhikurbanov were
acquitted in 2009, embarrassing prosecutors, but the Supreme
Court threw that verdict out and ordered a retrial. Rustam
Makhmoudov had eluded arrest until 2011.
It was not immediately clear when the judge would rule on
(Editing by Louise Ireland)