MOSCOW, December 3. /TASS/. A court should bring down a verdict in regard to Russian footballers Pavel Mamaev and Alexander Kokorin and it must be an unbiased verdict despite of all their previous merits, Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday.

“Do you believe that they should rather return playing football?” Peskov asked addressing students of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO).

One of the students in attendance said he believed the footballers must answer in line with the law for what they had done and Peskov replied that “this is my opinion as well. Moreover, this is the opinion of people, who were assaulted and beaten by them.”

“It is absolutely unimportant if they are talented footballers since we speak about a crime here,” Peskov said. “However, only a court can decide whether it was a crime or not and what punishment should follow.”

On October 8, FC Krasnodar midfielder Pavel Mamaev and FC Zenit striker Alexander Kokorin were reported to be behind two assaults in downtown Moscow. The first incident took place at around 8:30 a.m. Moscow time, when they allegedly attacked a driver of a Mercedes near the Peking Hotel in Moscow.

They beat the man up, in addition to breaking one of the vehicle’s windows and damaging one of the car’s doors. After that, the gang, which also included Kokorin’s brother Kirill, stopped in at a cafe on Bolshaya Nikitskaya Street in downtown Moscow, where they proceeded to beat up a director of one of the Russian trade ministry’s departments, Denis Pak.

The Moscow police detained the footballers on charges of battery and hooliganism. Moscow’s Tverskoy District Court ruled later in October to place them in pretrial custody for two months, until December 8.

This was not the first time that both Russian footballers were involved in public scandals. The most notorious one took place two years ago after the 2016 UEFA Euro Cup tournament in France. Mamaev and Kokorin allegedly shelled out 250,000 euros on champagne while partying in Monaco, just as the European championship was still on, but their national team was knocked out.

While Kokorin and Mamaev were partying at the ritzy Twiga club, they ordered some 500 bottles of Armand de Brignac champagne costing 500 euros each. According to eyewitnesses, the champagne was being served while the Russian national anthem was playing and the party was accompanied by a fireworks display.

The incident with Kokorin and Mamaev sparked a public outcry at that time, especially following the national team’s poor performance in June at the 2016 UEFA Euro Cup in France, and both players later apologized for their behavior vowing that it would never happen again.

Read the original article in full at TASS

Article Sourced via TASS

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