ROME (AP) — An Italian court has convicted a Ukrainian man who was serving as a volunteer fighter in eastern Ukraine of killing an Italian photographer who was covering the separatist fighting.

The judge in Pavia, Italy, also announced a 24-year prison term for Vitaly Markiv.

Journalist Andrea Rocchelli and his Russian translator were killed and a French photographer was seriously wounded during a mortar attack in 2014.

Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov tweeted that the ruling Friday was "unfair and shameful" and will be appealed.

Markiv later became a serviceman in Ukraine's National Guard but at the fighting's start, the Ukrainian government allowed volunteers to fight.

Italian news reports said Markiv, 29, who proclaimed his innocence in court, has dual Ukrainian-Italian citizenship and was arrested at an Italian airport in 2017.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.