MOSCOW, 8 Feb – RIA Novosti. The Moscow City Court on Monday reduced the term of arrest of the editor-in-chief of Mediazona, Sergei Smirnov, from 25 to 15 days under the protocol on an unauthorized action on January 23, the court told RIA Novosti.
“The court decided to reduce the punishment in the form of administrative arrest from 25 to 15 days,” the court's press service told RIA Novosti.
Last Wednesday, February 3, the Tverskoy District Court arrested the journalist for 25 days under an administrative article on repeated violation of the procedure for holding mass events. He faced a maximum of 30 days of arrest.
Shortly before that, Smirnov was detained at the entrance, when he went out for a walk with his five-year-old son, and was taken to the police department, and later released under an obligation to appear.
Lawyers reported that the arrest was related to the repost of a joke entry on Twitter, which ridiculed the external resemblance of Sergei Smirnov and the lead singer of the group “Cockroaches” Dmitry Spirin, who starred in a video in support of Alexei Navalny's headquarters.
The day after the arrest, the Union of Journalists of Russia sent an appeal to the competent authorities with a demand to check the legality of the prosecution of Smirnov, since “this court decision caused a sharp reaction in the journalistic community.”