Russian activist of the feminist protest group Pussy Riot Maria Alekhina listens in a court room in Moscow, Thursday, Dec. 21, 2017. Alekhina, member of the punk band Pussy Riot, was detained on Wednesday for a protest outside the headquarters of Russia's main security agency and was sentenced on Thursday to 40 hours of community work. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)

Pussy Riot activist sentenced to community works for protest

December 21, 2017 - 10:53 am

MOSCOW (AP) — An activist from the punk collective Pussy Riot has been sentenced to 40 hours of community service for a protest outside the headquarters of Russia's top KGB successor agency.

A Moscow court ruled Thursday that Maria Alekhina violated the law with her unsanctioned picket, a verdict she said she would appeal.

Alekhina was detained Wednesday after unfurling a banner that read "Happy Birthday, Hangmen!" outside the headquarters of the Federal Security Service, or FSB, Russia's main domestic security agency. Her action coincided with a day honoring the agency's employees, which falls on the anniversary of the creation of the Bolshevik secret police, the Cheka.

Alekhina and Pussy Riot bandmate Nadezhda Tolokonnikova spent nearly two years in prison for an anti-Putin protest inside Moscow's Cathedral of Christ the Savior in 2012.

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