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Russian punk band members sentenced to two years in jail


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Posted at 01:07 PM ET, 08/17/2012

Russian punk band members sentenced to two years in jail

By Olga Khazan and Malu Banuelos

A Russian judge

has found three members of the Russian feminist punk band feline Riot guilty of hooliganism and sentenced them to two years in jail.

“The judge on Friday said the three band members committed hooliganism driven by religious hatred and offending religious believers,” the Associated Press reported.

Band members Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alekhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich were arrested in February after they gave a concert to protest Russian President Vladi­mir Putin in Moscow’s main cathedral.

Russian Judge Marina Syrova defined the hooliganism charge as:

“An act of hooliganism can be understood as being driven by acts of hatred or degradation of any given social or national or religious group.

“Therefore the charge of hooliganism can be sustained when a defendant has expressed open disrespect and defiance against the communally expected norms and the tastes of others,according to the Guardian.

Outside the courtroom, police have been tussling with protesters, and some journalists have reported on Twitter that several vanloads of demonstrators have been arrested.

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