January 03, 2024

Student Sentenced for Spying


Student Sentenced for Spying
Notebook, book, and pen. Snufkin, StockSnap.io

On December 30, for the first time, Russia convicted a student for spying. An 18-year-old academic prodigy was accused of photographing the armed forces and sending his pictures to representatives of foreign states.

Kevin Lik stood out for his collection of academic medals. The Maykop native was a four-time winner of the local German Language Olympics and also won history and Eurasian linguistics competitions. In 2022, Lik completed a biology summer school and decorated his VKontakte with pictures of flowers and plants from the Caucasic mountains. A friend of Lik's told the BBC that the academic prodigy's mother had sent him to Moscow for a better education in 2022. 

The court's verdict said that Lik was against the invasion of Ukraine, and that, from December 23, 2021, until the date of his arrest, February 8, 2023, he observed and photographed military units in Maykop. Then he allegedly sent the images to a representative of a foreign state. It is not specified to whom or to which state these images were sent. Lik was in the ninth grade when the alleged spying took place.

The day after Lik was arrested, the Ministry of Internal Affairs opened a case against his mother for "petty hooliganism," after she allegedly swore in a public place. She was sentenced to 10 days in prison.

According to Meduza and the human rights organization Pervy Otdel (First Department), in 2023, 101 persons were charged with "treason" and "espionage" – the highest number recorded in years.

You Might Also Like

A Very Famous Terrorist
  • December 25, 2023

A Very Famous Terrorist

Popular writer Boris Akunin has been added to the Kremlin's list of terrorists and extremists.
An Anti-War Art Awakening
  • December 18, 2023

An Anti-War Art Awakening

Anonymous artist Zless creates anti-war art that juxtaposes traditional Russian symbols and the horrors of the invasion of Ukraine.
A QR Crackdown
  • December 14, 2023

A QR Crackdown

Moscow bans QR codes on billboards in response to the Russian political opposition.
One Country, Two Wars
  • September 16, 2023

One Country, Two Wars

The Kremlin is currently conducting not one, but two horrific wars.
Like this post? Get a weekly email digest + member-only deals

Some of Our Books

Marooned in Moscow

Marooned in Moscow

This gripping autobiography plays out against the backdrop of Russia's bloody Civil War, and was one of the first Western eyewitness accounts of life in post-revolutionary Russia. Marooned in Moscow provides a fascinating account of one woman's entry into war-torn Russia in early 1920, first-person impressions of many in the top Soviet leadership, and accounts of the author's increasingly dangerous work as a journalist and spy, to say nothing of her work on behalf of prisoners, her two arrests, and her eventual ten-month-long imprisonment, including in the infamous Lubyanka prison. It is a veritable encyclopedia of life in Russia in the early 1920s.
The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas

The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas

This exciting new trilogy by a Russian author – who has been compared to Orhan Pamuk and Umberto Eco – vividly recreates a lost world, yet its passions and characters are entirely relevant to the present day. Full of mystery, memorable characters, and non-stop adventure, The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas is a must read for lovers of historical fiction and international thrillers.  
Bears in the Caviar

Bears in the Caviar

Bears in the Caviar is a hilarious and insightful memoir by a diplomat who was “present at the creation” of US-Soviet relations. Charles Thayer headed off to Russia in 1933, calculating that if he could just learn Russian and be on the spot when the US and USSR established relations, he could make himself indispensable and start a career in the foreign service. Remarkably, he pulled it of.
Fish: A History of One Migration

Fish: A History of One Migration

This mesmerizing novel from one of Russia’s most important modern authors traces the life journey of a selfless Russian everywoman. In the wake of the Soviet breakup, inexorable forces drag Vera across the breadth of the Russian empire. Facing a relentless onslaught of human and social trials, she swims against the current of life, countering adversity and pain with compassion and hope, in many ways personifying Mother Russia’s torment and resilience amid the Soviet disintegration.
Woe From Wit (bilingual)

Woe From Wit (bilingual)

One of the most famous works of Russian literature, the four-act comedy in verse Woe from Wit skewers staid, nineteenth century Russian society, and it positively teems with “winged phrases” that are essential colloquialisms for students of Russian and Russian culture.
Faith & Humor: Notes from Muscovy

Faith & Humor: Notes from Muscovy

A book that dares to explore the humanity of priests and pilgrims, saints and sinners, Faith & Humor has been both a runaway bestseller in Russia and the focus of heated controversy – as often happens when a thoughtful writer takes on sacred cows. The stories, aphorisms, anecdotes, dialogues and adventures in this volume comprise an encyclopedia of modern Russian Orthodoxy, and thereby of Russian life.
The Moscow Eccentric

The Moscow Eccentric

Advance reviewers are calling this new translation "a coup" and "a remarkable achievement." This rediscovered gem of a novel by one of Russia's finest writers explores some of the thorniest issues of the early twentieth century.

About Us

Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.

Latest Posts

Our Contacts

Russian Life
73 Main Street, Suite 402
Montpelier VT 05602

802-223-4955