MOSCOW, December 28 (RAPSI) – The Moscow City Court on Thursday upheld a lower court’s ruling sentencing Maria Alyokhina, a member of the infamous feminist punk group Pussy Riot, to 40 hours of community service for unauthorized protest action near the Federal Security Service’s (FSB) headquarters, the court’s press office told RAPSI.
Alyokhina was arrested along with several other people after an authorized picket near the FSB building on December 20. The next day, the Meshchansky District Court of Moscow found her guilty of violating the established order for organizing and holding public events. She appealed the ruling in the Moscow City Court.
Feminist punk group Pussy Riot became known in February 2012, when Alyokhina along with four other 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 Alyokhina, Yekaterina Samutsevich, 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. In December 2013, Tolokonnikova and Alyokhina were pardoned under the amnesty dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the Russian Constitution.