Court Extends Detention of 3 Bolotnaya Protesters

A Moscow court extended the pre-trial detention term for three activists detained at the infamous May 6 riots on Bolotnaya Ploshchad, with one of them to remain in detention until late May and the other two until early June, Interfax reported.

The Basmanny District Court extended the investigation period and set July 6 as the new deadline for the investigation into the clashes that occurred between police and protesters on May 6.

Andrei Barabanov will remain in detention until May 28, Stepan Zimin until June 8 and Yaroslav Belousov until June 10.

The extension was attributed to the complexity and high work load of the case: A spokesman for the Investigative Committee told Rapsi legal news portal that investigators still needed to go over 60 volumes of case files.

Investigators also require additional time to settle all necessary formalities and have the suspects read the case files, an investigator at the hearing said, RIA-Novosti reported.

Opposition leader Alexei Navalny appeared at the court to show support to the activists in detention, but he was not allowed into the court room, according to Moskovsky Komsomolets.

A total of 21 activists are now accused of organizing mass riots and violence against police officers during the opposition rally on Bolotnaya Ploshchad last year, where more than 400 protesters were detained.

Fifteen of them remain in pre-trial detention.

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