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Moscow City Court continues trial of 2 opposition activists

February 25, 2014, 16:01 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Sergei Udaltsov and Leonid Razvozzhayev face up to ten years in prison

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Sergei Udaltsov

Sergei Udaltsov


MOSCOW, February 25. /ITAR-TASS/. Moscow City Court on Tuesday continued the trial of opposition activists Sergei Udaltsov and Leonid Razvozzhayev accused of planning riots across the country.

At the Tuesday hearing, special task force officer Andrei Arkhipov said he had no claims against the defendants in connection with the May 6, 2012 riot on Moscow's Bolotnaya Square. He said though that he had seen riot participants attacking police.

"They were very aggressive," Arkhipov said. "Two or three protesters banded together to attack police. A brick hit my chin; doctors put three stitches into the wound," he added.

The special task force officer denied seeing riot masterminds at the scene or protesters' receiving someone's orders.

Following his testimony, Udaltsov's lawyer Dmitry Agranovsky and Karina Moskalenko began a long argument with presiding judge Alexander Zamashnyuk after he had turned down a number of lawyers' petitions and did not address their questions.

Criminal charges against Udaltsov and Razvozzhayev

Proceedings over planning mass disturbances were opened against Udaltsov and Razvozzhayev after a film titled "Anatomy of Protest" which showed a meeting between Russian opposition leaders and Georgian politician Givi Targamadze.

The prosecutor's indictment said that Konstantin Lebedev (already convicted in the case), together with Razvozzhayev and Udaltsov, entered in collusion with Georgian politician Givi Targamadze to mastermind riots in Moscow and other Russian cities. To this end, they allegedly planned to set up a training camp in Romania and held a seminar for future riot participants in the Lithuanian town of Trakai.

Also, the prosecutor said Targamadze had provided funding to organize protests against the authorities. "One tranche was worth 90,000 dollars, and the defendants shared the money," the prosecutor said.

Razvozzhayev was also accused of illegal border crossing and escaping the investigator. Udaltsov and Razvozzhayev denied the charges.

Left Front leader Udaltsov has been under house arrest, and Razvozzhayev has been in custody. They face up to ten years in prison.

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