MOSCOW, August 20 (RAPSI) – A court in Russia’s Nizhny Tagil has refused to release activist Kirill Zhukov, who had committed an assault on a National Guard officer during an unauthorized rally in Moscow on July 27, 2019, on parole, lawyer Alexey Bushmakov has told RAPSI.

A prosecutor also objected to parole basing on the convict’s characteristics from a penal colony.

On September 4, 2019, Moscow’s Tverskoy District Court convicted Zhukov of the use of force against a representative of authority. The court found that the defendant knocked down an officer by butting him in the face.

Zhukov pleaded not guilty.

Protest actions began in Moscow in mid-July 2019 after election commissions denied registration of certain opposition members as candidates for the Moscow City Duma elections reasoning that documents submitted by them contained numerous violations.

The first unauthorized rally took place hear the Moscow City Election Commission’s building on July 14 and looked like a provocation, according to law experts.

Unauthorized rallies in support of candidates seeking to become lawmakers of the Moscow State Duma but refused registration by the Election Commission were also held on July 27 and August 3 in central Moscow. Over 1,000 people were arrested for various violations as a result.

Following the 27 July rally, the Investigative Committee opened a criminal case over mass riots. Investigators believe that the protest action was held with the use of force against representatives of authority.