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Iniquities

Decision to put opposition blogger to mental rehab found illegal

28.06.12 14:03    By News dept

The blogger Maxim Efimov is suspected of «spreading hatred and offending people according to their religious beliefs.»

The blogger Maxim Efimov is suspected of «spreading hatred and offending people according to their religious beliefs.»    Photo: rk.karelia.ru


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The higher court of Karelia has found illegal a ruling by the Petrozavodsk city court to put a blogger who wrote anti-church texts into mental rehab, AGORA human rights group said to Gazeta.ru.

"The decision of the first instance court has been annulled. The case will be reconsidered. The judge of the higher court said the city court decision cannot be considered legal," the blogger's lawyer, Ramil Akhmetgaliev, said.

On May 12, 2012 Petrozavodsk city court ruled that the blogger Maxim Efimov be sent to mental rehab.
"In order to understand his current state and the level of his personal deviancy," the court said.

Efimov is suspected of "spreading hatred and offending the public over their religious beliefs." He was prosecuted after his article about the Russian Orthodox church (ROC) was published on his blog. On December 31, 2011 Efimov published an article called "Karelia is tired of priests," in which he criticized regional ROC activity.

For example, Efimov said that "Karelian capital residents are discontent with the church" and tried to explain why. "The thinking part of society understands that the church is a power party. Just like United Russia, the ROC fools people and tells them how good we live. Total corruption, oligarchy and the absolute power of the security services are linked to the rebirth of the ROC," Efimov wrote.

He also said that churches are built on account of the budget, and the ROC uses buildings built for kindergardens, which there aren't enough of in Russia. Efimov is facing a fine of up to 300 thousand rubles (some $10 000), one year community service, or imprisonment for up to 2 years.

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