The cassation court sentenced Alexander Semin, accused of rape and murder of a five-year-old Tajik girl Khuvaido Tillozoda in 2018, to life imprisonment. Lawyer Shavkatjon Umarov, who represents the interests of the father of the murdered girl in court, told the Tajik service of Radio Liberty that the verdict of the cassation court was announced on September 13. On March 15, 2023, the Moscow Regional Court sentenced Semin to 24 years in prison. Khuvaido’s relatives demanded a review of the sentence and a more severe punishment for the criminal. “Both the state prosecutor and the injured party were dissatisfied with the verdict passed in March. Alexander Semin’s lawyer sought a complete acquittal of his client. In turn, we demanded a more severe punishment for him – life imprisonment,” the lawyer noted. The convict protested after being sentenced to life. He has the right to appeal the verdict of the cassation court within six months. Khuvaido Tillozoda was killed on July 22, 2018. On Sunday, a five-year-old girl was stolen from the yard of her house in Serpukhov, near Moscow. The family and volunteers searched for the child for almost a day, but when they found it, it was too late. The dead child was found in a sports bag near the railway station. A forensic examination showed that the girl was raped and then killed with a knife. Alexander Semin, who lived in Serpukhov next door to a family of immigrants from Tajikistan, was detained on charges of murder. Later it turned out that local residents had already complained to the police about Semin: in 2017, another resident of Serpukhov accused the man of “committing unlawful acts” against her young daughter. But the police, who were supposed to conduct an investigation into Semin’s case, then did not open a criminal case against the man. As a result, district police officer Georgy Kuznetsov, who refused to consider this woman’s application, was sentenced to 10 months of correctional labor. For several years the trial could not begin because Alexander Semin was in a psychiatric clinic. The hospital sent a certificate stating that Semin, due to his mental state, could not participate in the trial. Khuvaido’s relatives were convinced that the killer was trying to evade responsibility and was feigning a mental disorder. The lawyer for the family of the murdered girl, Shavkat Umarov, was also sure that Semin was playing for time.