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Court Annuls Extension of Bolotnaya Suspect's Detention

A Moscow court on Thursday delivered a rare victory to a suspect in the politically charged "Bolotnaya case," overturning a decision to extend opposition activist Vladimir Akimenkov's arrest on charges that he participated in violence at an anti-government rally in Moscow last spring.

This marks the first time a court has approved such an appeal from any of the 27 suspects in the case, which their supporters say is politically motivated.

The ruling means that if case documents are not delivered to court by June 10 — one year after Akimenkov's arrest and, coincidentally, his 26th birthday — he should be released from pre-trial detention, his lawyer told Interfax.

Akimenkov's trial will likely begin in mid-July, his lawyer said.

More than 400 were detained after protesters clashed with riot police during a massive demonstration on Bolotnaya Ploshchad on the eve of President Vladimir Putin's return to the presidency last May.

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