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Pussy Riot trial verdict announced

Pussy Riot trial verdict announced

Three members of Pussy Riot have been found guilty of hooliganism motivated by religious hatred.

The verdict was delivered to Maria Alyokhina, 24, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, and Yekaterina Samutsevich, 29 at Moscow's Khamovnichesky Court today (August 17). Prosecutors had requested a three-year prison term in the event of a guilty verdict. The sentence is expected later today (August 17)

The three women were detained after they, along with other member of the band, staged a flashmob-style performance where they sang a song called 'Holy Shit' at the altar of Moscow’s Christ The Saviour Cathedral on February 21. They were protesting against the Orthodox Christian church’s support for president Vladimir Putin.

Earlier today, Russian opposition leader Sergey Udaltsov was detained by police as he approached the police cordon and attempted to enter the court building.

Speaking as the nine-day trial concluded, band member Tolokonikovoy had said: "This is a trial of the whole government system of Russia, which so likes to show its harshness toward the individual, its indifference to his honour and dignity… If this political system throws itself against three girls… it shows this political system is afraid of truth."

She added: "Maybe they think it wouldn't be wrong to try us for speaking against Putin and his system, but they can't say that because it's been forbidden."

Pussy Riot member Maria Alekhina later told the court: "I am not scared of you. I'm not scared of lies and fiction, or the badly formed deception that is the verdict of this so-called court. Because my words will live, thanks to openness… When thousands of people will read and watch this, this freedom will grow with every caring person who listens to us in this country."


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