The lawyers said the verdict was predictable and have planned to continue to the appeal, Ukraine Today reported.

Other judicial avenues will now be explored. The pair could potentially serve their sentences in Ukraine – the only problem – Moscow considers them Russian citizens following its illegal invasion and annexation of Ukraine's Crimea region. Another option is a prisoner exchange.

Human rights groups deplored the fabricated trial, comparing it to Soviet-era style punishments. This protest outside the Russian Embassy in Ukraine is just one way activists have highlighted their plight.

Sentsov is accused of leading a terrorist group with links to Ukraine's ultranationalist Right Sector movement. He, Kolchenko and two other men were illegally transported to Moscow after their arrest in May 2014.

See’s video section for more of the latest news from Ukraine in video from Ukraine Today, Ukraine’s 24-hour English-language news channel.