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“All human beings are born free and equal

in dignity and rights.”

- Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Vladyslav Yesypenko

Detained Since: March 18, 2021.

Charges: Illegal production, repair, or modification of firearms.

Sentence: 6 years in prison and a fine of 110,000 Russian rubles.

Biography: Before the invasion and annexation of Crimea by Russia, Vladyslav Yesypenko resided in Sevastopol with his family. They then moved to Kryvyi Rih, Ukraine. In 2016, he started collaborating with Radio Liberty’s Krym.Realii project as a freelance journalist. He prepared videos on social and ecological topics impacting the Crimean Tatar community. In 2021, while reporting in Crimea, Yesypenko was stopped by Russian security agents, tortured in detention, and forced to give a false confession. On March 16, 2022, he was sentenced to six years’ imprisonment and fined 110,000 Russian rubles. He has had health issues related to his kidneys while in prison. When he had a flare of his kidney condition in prison, he was prevented from accessing healthcare.

Yesypenko was given the 2022 PEN/Barbey Freedom to Write Award by PEN America.

Advocacy Partner: PEN America