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Moscow Court Extends House Arrest for Udaltsov

The political activist and leader of the Left Front movement helped organize a series of protests against Putin. A. Mahonin

A Moscow court Wednesday extended the sentence of leftist opposition leader Sergei Udaltsov, who stands accused of having plotted to incite unrest across Russia.

The leader of the Left Front movement is now expected to remain under house arrest until February, taking his period of detention up to a year.

His lawyer, Violetta Volkova, said that the decision was unfounded and that Udaltsov had respected the terms of his house arrest.

"Udaltsov has not once violated the terms of detention. He is in conditions of limited mobility and he cannot telephone his lawyers," Volkova said.

Volkova said Udaltsov's defense team had gone through 65 volumes of case material and studied the video evidence.

Udaltsov came into the spotlight during the mass street protests that erupted in response to widespread allegations of electoral fraud in the 2011 parliamentary elections, which saw the United Russia party maintain a slim majority in the State Duma.

Investigations into Udaltsov began after the government-friendly NTV channel aired a documentary purporting to show him meeting with a Georgian politician, Givi Targamadze, and discussing plans for fomenting unrest in Russia and securing foreign funding to that end.

Udaltsov is also accused of being the mastermind behind clashes with police at a sanctioned May 2012 rally at Bolotnaya Ploshchad in central Moscow.

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