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EURASIA > Pussy Riot will not ask Putin for pardon: lawyer

MOSCOW - Agence France-Presse

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Russian feminist punk-rock band Pussy Riot members Maria Alyokhina (L), Yekaterina Samutsevich (C) and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova (R) sit in a glass-walled cage in a court room after the judge delivered the verdict at the Khamovnichesky Court in Moscow, Russia 17 August 2012. EPA photo

Russian feminist punk-rock band Pussy Riot members Maria Alyokhina (L), Yekaterina Samutsevich (C) and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova (R) sit in a glass-walled cage in a court room after the judge delivered the verdict at the Khamovnichesky Court in Moscow, Russia 17 August 2012. EPA photo

The three members of punk band Pussy Riot sentenced to two years in prison for performing an anti-Vladimir Putin song in Russia's top church will not ask the president for a pardon, their lawyer said Monday.
 
"Our clients will not ask for a pardon," defence lawyer Nikolai Polozov told AFP on Monday, adding: "Literally this is what they said: 'Let them go to hell with their pardon'." Band members Maria Alyokhina, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Yekaterina Samutsevich on Friday were each found guilty of "hooliganism motivated by religious hatred" for their February 21 protest in the Christ the Saviour Cathedral and handed two-year jail terms.
 
The West decried the sentencing, with the United States saying it was "disproportionate" and the European Union calling the punishment excessive.

Polozov said the defence team planned to appeal as soon as they received a copy of the verdict.

August/20/2012

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