MOSCOW, June 4 (RAPSI, Diana Gutsul) - The attorney for former police officer Dmitry Pavlyuchenkov – convicted of murdering journalist Anna Politkovskaya – has filed a petition with the Moscow City Court to suspend his sentence.

In an interview with RAPSI, attorney Karen Nersisyan said that he addressed the court following a request by the medical staff at the detention facility where Pavlyuchenkov is being held. “The doctors are positive that Pavlyuchenkov would not survive a prison transfer due to health problems. If he doesn’t receive the necessary help within the next two or three months, he has no chance to survive.”

The Moscow City Court released a statement confirming receipt of the petition. However, no hearing has been scheduled yet. “The judge requested additional documents. A hearing date will be announced upon receipt of the documents and after both parties have been notified of the date,” spokesperson Ulyana Solopova said.

On October 7, 2006, Politkovskaya, a crusading reporter with the independent Novaya Gazeta newspaper, was shot dead at the age of 48 in the elevator of her central Moscow apartment building. The murder has been linked to her coverage of human rights abuses in Chechnya.

Pavlyuchenkov was convicted in connection with the killing in a separate trial in December 2012.  He reached a plea bargain with investigators and testified against the other suspects in the case.

The Moscow City Court sentenced Pavlyuchenkov to 11 years in a high security prison. On June 9, the court will announce the second verdict in the Politkovskaya case, the verdict of the jury who found five of the defendants guilty and ruled that only one deserved a lenient sentence. During the trial, the prosecution requested at least 15 years for each of the defendants.