Russian court website defaced in support of Pussy Riot

August 21, 2012 6:30 am
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The three members of Pussy Riot were found guilty of “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred”/FILE
MOSCOW, Aug 21 – An unidentified computer hacker broke into the official website of a Moscow court that sentenced Pussy Riot band members to jail, defacing its front page with obscenities and an anti-Vladimir Putin slogan, a court spokeswoman said on Tuesday.

The website of the Khamovnichesky District Court featured on Tuesday morning a provocative video clip by Bulgarian gay singer Azis and profanity-laced postings mocking Russia’s justice system, an AFP correspondent reported.

A new song by the Pussy Riot punk band called “Putin is Lighting the Fires of the Revolution” has also been uploaded on the site.

The slogan “No logic – just hardcore” was posted on the hacked site’s top right corner next to a cell phone number and the words: “Ask Zhenya.”

The man who answered the phone and identified himself as blogger Yevgeny Volnov said he did not know who had broken into the site but suggested that those who did it wanted to show their support for the jailed singers.

“The hackers’ reaction is quite understandable,” he told AFP. Zhenya is a diminutive of the first name Yevgeny.

On Friday the three members of Pussy Riot were found guilty of “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred” and handed two-year jail terms after they performed an anti-Putin song in Moscow’s main cathedral in February.

The West decried the court ruling against Maria Alyokhina, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Yekaterina Samutsevich, calling it disproportionate and excessive.

A spokeswoman for the Khamovnichesky District Court said the hacking of the website (http://hamovnichesky.msk.sudrf.ru) had been discovered earlier on Tuesday.

“The site has come under a hacker attack,” spokeswoman Darya Lyakh told AFP. “Currently the work is under way to restore the site.”

Anyone who tried to upload the site later Tuesday received a message that “the webpage cannot be found”.

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