Despite the position taken by the Plenum of the Supreme Court of Russia, and numerous decisions of regional courts and investigators, experts of Chelyabinsk State University have stated that representatives of the Prosecutor’s Office, the courts, the police, civil servants and deputies of the State Duma are members of a distinct social group.
On this basis, texts posted on the Internet by local civic activist Andrei Ermolenko were found to contain “expressions intent to incite hatred and also to humiliate groups of people on the basis of their membership of a social group,” Open Information Agency correspondent reports. In line with Article 282 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, Ermolenko faces up to two years in prison. The interests of the Chelyabinsk activist are represented by Agora Human Rights Association. [Read more]