One Pussy Riot member freed

A member of the Russian punk band Pussy Riot has been freed by a Moscow court for staging an anti-Kremlin protest in a Moscow cathedral, but two other members have had their two-year jail sentence upheld.

Two members of Pussy Riot lose appeal

A Russian appeal court has upheld the two-year prison sentence given to two members of feminist trio Pussy riot by a court in August, and has freed a third member of the group.

 Yekaterina Samutsevich
Pussy Riot member Yekaterina Samutsevich received a suspended sentence Credit: Reuters

A Moscow City Court judge said the court was leaving the sentences in place for Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina but issuing a suspended sentence for Yekaterina Samutsevich.

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Pussy Riot appeal prison sentence

Maria Alekhina, Yekaterina Samutsevich and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova in a glass cage in a court room in Moscow
Maria Alekhina, Yekaterina Samutsevich and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova in a glass cage in a court room in Moscow Credit: APTN

Three members of the punk band Pussy Riot are set to make their case before a Russian appeals court in Moscow today.

The feminist trio were convicted in August of hooliganism motivated by religious hatred and sentenced to two years in prison for performing an anti-Putin protest song inside Moscow's third biggest cathedral.

The appeal is being heard at Moscow City Court
The appeal is being heard at Moscow City Court Credit: APTN

The verdict was condemned in the US and Europe, where it was seen as an illustration of Mr Putin's intolerance of dissent.

Mr Putin, however has since defended the ruling saying "it is impermissible to undermine our moral foundations, moral values, to try to destroy the country".

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Church spokesman: Pussy Riot should get a chance to mend their ways if they 'repent'

Ahead of Pussy Riot's appeal, senior church spokesman, Vladimir Legoida, said the band;s stunt "must not remain unpunished whatever the justification," but that any repentance, if expressed, should be taken into account.

The church sincerely wishes for the repentance of those who desecrated a holy place, certainly it would benefit their souls.

If any words of the convicts indicate repentance ... we would wish that they are not left unnoticed and those who violated the law get a chance to mend their ways."

Pussy Riot appeal to be heard in Russia court

Three band members of Pussy Riot
Three band members of Pussy Riot were jailed in August for staging an anti-Kremlin protest Credit: Reuters

A Russian court is due to hear an appeal by three members of the punk band Pussy Riot, who were jailed for two years in August for staging an anti-Kremlin protest in a Moscow cathedral.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, Maria Alyokhina, 24, and Yekaterina Samutsevich, 30, were found guilty of "an act of hooliganism based on motives of religious hatred and enmity".