Moscow City Court: A Pussy Riot member is likely trying to drag out trial

Moscow City Court officials believe that Yekaterina Samutsevich, one of the Pussy Riot activists convicted for a stunt in the Cathedral of Christ the Savior, is deliberately dragging out the trial of the cassation appeal contesting the Pussy Riot sentence.

"As a rule, such actions taking place on the day of the court hearing are aimed at dragging out the legal proceedings," Moscow City Court press officer Anna Usachyova told reporters on Monday. On Monday, the court postponed the trial of the cassation appeal contesting the sentence given to the convicted Pussy Riot activists till next week. The hearing has been postponed until October 10 because one Pussy Riot activist, Yekaterina Samutsevich, has asked for a different lawyer and the court granted her request.

The court declined Samutsevich's request at first but then decided to recess for considering a written recusal statement. Samutsevich rejected the services of three defenders, Mark Feigin, Nikolai Polozov and Violetta Volkova, who represent the interests of three Pussy Riot members. The other two singers told the court they would not make similar statements.

The court denied recusal of Mark Feigin and Nikolai Polozov. "Feigin and Polozov have orders to defend Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina. Their recusal shall not be heard," the judge said.

In the meantime, Samutsevich's father said he was unaware of his daughter's intention to change lawyers. "I don't know why this happened. I don't understand anything," he told reporters.

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