Pussy Riot members appeal sentence in Supreme Court
MOSCOW, May 13 (RAPSI) - The sentence of controversial Pussy Riot punk band members has been appealed again. The band member Yekaterina Samutsevich has filed with Russia's Supreme Court a supervisory appeal against the verdict, the court’s press office told RAPSI Tuesday.
On April 4, the Moscow City Court mitigated the sentence for one month. The hate motive against a social group of Orthodox Christians was also excluded from the judgment. Pussy Riot’s defense asked the court to vacate the sentence. In February 2012, five young women wearing brightly colored balaclavas staged a punk rock prayer in Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral. An edited video of their performance was posted on the Internet and caused a public outcry.
In August 2012, the Khamovnichesky District Court in Moscow sentenced Samutsevich and two other Pussy Riot members - Maria Alyokhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova - to two years in a prison settlement for hooliganism. In October 2012, the Moscow City Court changed Samutsevich's verdict to a suspended sentence and released her immediately based on her new attorneys' argument that she had been seized by security guards prior to reaching the altar.
Tolokonnikova and Alyokhina were recently freed after serving nearly 21 months of a two-year sentence for hooliganism. They were jailed for performing the “punk prayer” in Moscow’s Christ the Savior cathedral as part of a political protest in 2012. The activists were pardoned in December 2013, pursuant to a broad amnesty spearheaded by Russian President Vladimir Putin.