MOSCOW, April 23 (RAPSI) - Latvian prosecutors have brought charges against a local resident who was collecting signatures under a petition to integrate the republic with Russia, RIA Novosti reports on Thursday citing the Riga District Prosecutor’s Office’s press secretary Aiga Eiduka.

Eiduka said that the defendant published a petition on Latvia’s joining Russia in March 2014. The same month, a criminal case was opened on public appeal for abandoning Latvia’s sovereignty in order for the republic to accede to a foreign state.

The author of the petition was identified. The Latvian resident who distributed the petition was detained on February 25, 2015. The investigation included a search and the confiscation of his computers and data storage devices.

The crime is punishable by up to three years in prison, community service or a fine. The Prosecutor’s Office did not disclose the identity of the offender.