Russian blogger convicted for playing 'Pokemon Go' in church

May 12, 2017, 12:22
Russian blogger convicted for playing 'Pokemon Go' in church

Sokolovsky has been given a three-and-a-half-year suspended sentence, which means he won't be imprisoned unless he is found guilty of a new crime. It had more than a million views, according to The Guardian.

The Guardian reports on Thursday, Sokolovsky received a three and a half year suspended sentence for "inciting religious hatred".

Judge Yekaterina Shoponyak found Sokolovsky guilty of the same offence for which members of the feminist punk band Pussy Riot were jailed in 2012.

The court agreed with the prosecution that a number of videos on Sokolovsky's channel hurt the feelings of religious people and incited hatred against them by comparing Jesus Christ to a zombie, saying that God does not exist and arguing that Russian Federation is an obscurantist country.

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Amnesty International called him a prisoner of conscienceand had urged Russian Federation to release him.

Users play by walking around the real world catching cutesy little virtual monsters like Pikachu and Jigglypuff in places near their phone location and training them to fight each other.

"It is clear that Mr Sokolovsky was not a casual passer-by, who in a fit of gaming passion went into the temple, but rather a well-known young blogger in the city, who works in the style of Charlie Hebdo", Legoyda wrote in a Facebook post past year.

During the trial, Shoponyak reportedly apologized to anyone who may have been offended by his video, which was filmed in the Yekaterinburg's Church of All Saints, but that didn't seem to get him any leniency.

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A Russian blogger named Ruslan Sokolovsky has learned this the hard way. The act was also deemed offensive to religious sensibilities in Russian Federation.

Sokolovsky's decision to catch Pokémon in the church and subsequently make wisecracks about religion may have been distasteful, but prison worthy? "This is another assault on freedom of expression".

Sokolovsky had argued his innocence and was shocked at the conviction, but he does dismiss warnings in the Russian media about how playing Pokémon Go could result in jail time.

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