On Wednesday, a Moscow court mitigated the two-year prison penalty for Pussy Riot member Ekaterina Samutsevich to a suspended sentence at an appeal hearing. Samutsevich walked out of the courtroom to freedom, while her two convicted band mates had their sentences upheld.
Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, and Maria Alyokhina, 24, are planned to be transferred to a penal colony to serve out their two-year sentences.
The previous appeal hearing, on October 1, was delayed when Samutsevich unexpectedly fired her lawyer, Violetta Volkova. Her new lawyer, Irina Khrunova, formed an interesting defence line, insisting on the fact that her client did not actually take part in the protest, as she was grabbed before she could join the other members. In fact, four girls took part in so-called 'punk prayer', three of them were dancing on the ambon (Samutsevich was not among them).
In the course of the hearing, Pussy Riot members repeatedly said they “had no intention of offending religious believers” and only wanted to raise their voices against the current political situation in Russia.
Author: Julia Alieva