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'Pussy Riot' on Trial for Russia Church Protest

3 locked up for 'religious hooliganism' for anti-Putin song
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Jul 30, 2012 4:50 AM CDT

(Newser) – Members of a female punk protest group go on trial today in Russia for "religious hooliganism." Three young women of Pussy Riot have been jailed since February after they sang a song criticizing President Vladimir Putin in Moscow's main cathedral that was slammed as "blasphemous" by church officials. The three were led into court today in handcuffs, then locked into a box of bullet-proof glass, reports the BBC.

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They face seven years in prison if convicted of "hooliganism motivated by religious hostility." More than 100 prominent Russian actors, artists, and musicians have urged officials to release the three. (Read more Vladimir Putin stories.)

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