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Prominent Artist Sues Pussy Riot

Artist Nikas Safronov has filed a civil suit against the authors of a Pussy Riot video for using his image without permission.

Sergei Zhorin, the artist's attorney, said Wednesday that he had filed a lawsuit on the basis of "protecting the rights to an image" for the use of Safronov's image in the video titled "Pussy Riot Scorches Putin's Glamour" that appeared on YouTube on Nov. 30, 2011, Interfax reported.

"Nikas never supported that band," Zhorin said, adding that he and his client may turn to the Interior Ministry to determine the creator of the video.

The video, which appeared on the eve of the parliamentary elections held on Dec. 4, 2011, showed a typically scandalous performance by the band at a closed fashion show attended by Moscow celebrities, during which Safronov was shown "jumping from his seat and demanding to be taken out of the hall," Pussy Riot wrote in their blog.

Safronov said he wasn't aware of Pussy Riot's popularity and that he only learned about the video from his son Luka, Lenta.ru reported.

Three of the band's members — Maria Alyokhina, Yekaterina Samutsevich and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova — were sentenced to two years in a penal colony for hooliganism during their performance at Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral in February 2012.

Samutsevich's sentence was later suspended.

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