A Russian court has convicted a Chechen man on charges of assisting the hostage-taking raid by Chechen rebels on a Moscow theatre last October.
Most hostages died of gas poisoning
Zairbek Talkhigov was found guilty of informing the gunmen about the movement of special forces near the theatre, and sentenced to eight-and-a-half years in prison.
Talkhigov had pleaded not guilty, saying he wanted to help free the hostages.
Chechen guerrillas held 800 people during a musical performance - all 41 gunmen and 129 hostages died when special forces stormed the theatre three days later.
Talkhidov said he had learned the phone number of the hostage-takers' leader from a member of the Russian parliament, and wanted to assist the rescue operation.
He said he had given the hostage-takers information about the troops' location in order to win their confidence.
During the trial, the judge ordered the erasing of Talkhigov's conversations with the hostage-takers.
As a result, some commentators questioned the fairness of the trial.
Talkhigov's lawyer accused the Russian security services of destroying all written statements taken from his client in the days following his arrest in October.
"The Moscow city court was unable to fully study all the
evidence," the lawyer said.
During the trial the chief prosecutor said the Chechen warlord believed to be behind the hostage-taking, Shamil Basayev, had also been planning a series of attacks in Moscow - including the seizure of the lower house of parliament.