NOVOSIBIRSK, June 8 - RAPSI. The city prosecutor's office has concluded that posters of icons, which appeared around Novosibirsk in March, in support of the Pussy Riot female punk group were put up by local artist Artyom Loskutov.

Loskutov reported on his website that the administrative case against him has been referred to court to determine his punishment.

News of the icon-style posters which were displayed on three billboards in Novosibirsk spread after Loskutov placed photos of them on the Internet. The poster shows a haloed mother and child composition, with the woman wearing a Pussy Riot style stocking-mask. The mayor's office claimed the ads were placed unlawfully.

According to Loskutov, he was summoned to the prosecutor's office on Thursday where he received a courts summons and a resolution regarding the opening of a case against him for breaking the law on the freedom of conscience, religious worship and religious associations. He is facing a fine of 500 to 1,000 rubles ($15-30).

The resolution says that Loskutovs involvement was discovered by the fingerprints left on the posters. Loskutov has made no comment on this.

The Pussy Riot group of five masked female punks climbed up before the icon stand of the Christ the Savior Cathedral in Moscow on February 21 and performed a "protest prayer" at the altar. The lyrics included lines such as, "Holy Mother, Blessed Virgin, Chase Putin Out!" The video was posted online and evoked a massive public outcry.
Three suspects have been arrested and charged with hooliganism. They are facing up to seven years in prison.