Support The Moscow Times!

Russia Restricts Activities of Plagiarism Campaigner on ‘Extremism’ Charges

Andrei Zayakin. Alexander Koryakov / Kommersant

A Moscow court restricted internet access and freedom of movement Monday for prominent plagiarism campaigner and journalist Andrei Zayakin, independent media outlet Novaya Gazeta Europe reported.

Zayakin, 41, was detained in Moscow on Sunday on charges of “financing extremist activities” for a 1,000 ruble ($16) donation he made to opposition leader Alexei Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation. 

The Anti-Corruption Foundation was dubbed “extremist” by the Russian authorities last year. 

According to the ruling by Moscow’s Basmanny district court, Zayakin is prohibited from using all means of communication — including internet and written correspondence — and cannot leave his house between 8 p.m. and 8 a.m. while his case is investigated, Novaya Gazeta Europe reported. 

As well as an independent journalist, Zayakin is a co-founder of “Dissernet,” an online scientific network that works to expose plagiarism in Ph.D. theses issued by Russia’s higher education institutions and scientific articles published in the country. 

Volunteers for Dissernet have found traces of plagiarism in the scientific works of many top officials, including government ministers, parliamentary deputies and top security officers. 

If found guilty, Zayakin faces up to eight years in prison. 

… we have a small favor to ask.

As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just 2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.


Read more