Judges reject Pussy Riot appeal against conviction

Moscow's highest court has rejected an appeal by three members of the punk band Pussy Riot against their hooliganism conviction after they staged a protest against Vladimir Putin.

The judges upheld the verdict against the band last week, but the decision was not published until today, the Associated Press reported.

Pussy Riot members Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alyokhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich.
Pussy Riot members Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alyokhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich. Credit: REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin

Pussy Riot performed a "punk prayer" in Moscow's Red Square asking the Virgin Mary to rid Russia of Putin shortly before he was elected to a third term as president.

The court said this offended religious believers and disturbed the peace.

Band members Yekaterina Samutsevich, Maria Alekhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova were each handed two-year sentences in August last year.

Ms Samutsevich was released on appeal, but her conviction was not overturned.

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