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Woman involved in May 2012 Moscow riot case says exonerated under amnesty

January 10, 2014, 19:27 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, January 10. /ITAR-TASS/. Anastasia Rybachenko, a female activist of Russia’s off-parliament opposition who was charged with offenses in the aftermath of the May 6, 2012, riot on Bolotnaya Square in Moscow, has been exonerated of criminal charges in connection with the amnesty for individuals with minor offenses, which was declared last month in the light of the 20th anniversary since adoption of the incumbent Constitution.

Rybachenko, who has been hiding away from prosecution abroad, tweeted about it Saturday.

“I’ve been amnestied,” she wrote.

Rybachenko, who is an activist of Solidarnost and Strategiya-31 movements, posted the message in several languages.

Her lawyer Vladimir Samokhin, whom Itar-Tass turned to, confirmed the fact of exoneration of her guilt under the amnesty plan. “A resolution on it has been issued,” he said.

A search was held in July 2012 in the apartment belonging to Rybachenko’s mother when the activist was making a trip to Germany. In the wake of the law enforcers’ action she decided to stay away from returning to Russia.

The Russian authorities put her on a federal list of wanted offenders September 11, 2012, and charges with involvement in mass disorders under Article 212 of Russia’s Criminal Code were issued to her. They could have landed her in jail with a term of up to ten years.

The so-called Bolotnaya Square case pertaining to the mass disorders and counteraction to the police was instituted in the light of May 6, 2012, events on Moscow’s downtown Bolotnaya Square when an action of the off-parliament oppositionist parties and movements grew over into clashes with the police.

On that day, the forces of law and order detained more than 400 people. More than thirty policemen were injured and several dozen protesters received minor injuries, too.

The criminal cases cited the clauses of the Criminal Code administering punishment for mass disorders and violence against representatives of state power.

A number of people found themselves in the dock. They were Maria Baronova, Alexandra Doukhanina, Vladimir Akimenkov, Stepan Zimin, Sergei Krivov, Alexei Polikhovich, Denis Lutskevich, Nikolai Kavkazsky, Leonid Kovyazin, Artyom Savyolov, Yaroslav Beloussov, and Andrei Barabanov.

Baronov, Kavkazsky, Akimenkov, and Kovyazin were relieved of criminal responsibility under the December 2013 amnesty.

Another three persons - Maksim Luzyanin, Konstantin Lebedev, and Mikhail Kossenko - have already received jail terms.

In addition, separate cases were instituted over the suspected organizers of the riots - Left Front coordinator Sergei Udaltsov and an aide to MP Ilya Ponomaryov, Leonid Razvozzhayev.

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