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Navalny fined $350 for staging unauthorized rally, gets 15 days in jail for resisting arrest

Navalny fined $350 for staging unauthorized rally, gets 15 days in jail for resisting arrest
A Russian court has sentenced Russian opposition activist Aleksey Navalny to 15 days in jail for resisting arrest during an unsanctioned rally on Sunday. Earlier, he was found guilty of staging the protest, for which he will be fined 20,000 rubles ($350).

Aleksey Navalny was detained shortly after arriving at an unsanctioned anti-corruption protest in downtown Moscow on Sunday. He was charged with violating a law on public gatherings and faced a fine, community service, or administrative detention. He was also charged for resisting arrest during the same rally.

Navalny’s defense will appeal both the administrative charge and the $350 fine, the activist’s lawyer Olga Mikhaylova told journalists.

Moscow police have officially confirmed that they detained some 500 demonstrators.

Some 8,000 people took part in the protest in Russia’s capital, law enforcement officials reported. As the rally continued, police used loudspeakers to call on the protesters to disperse.

Protesters turned up despite failing to obtain a permit from the mayor’s office to hold a rally at the site of their choosing. The authorities had suggested two alternative venues, which the organizers rejected. Moscow police said that taking part in the unsanctioned rally could pose a safety risk and advised people against it.

Similar rallies, some unsanctioned and others permitted by local authorities, were attended by thousands of people across Russia on Sunday.

READ MORE: Thousands take to streets in opposition rallies across Russia (VIDEOS, PHOTOS)

"Those who claimed on the previous day in pseudoacademic language that the event was lawful and in no way violated the law – they were telling blatant lies,” Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Monday, referring to the organizers of the event.

The Russian Investigative Committee said on Monday that it has evidence that the organizers of an unsanctioned rally in Moscow offered monetary incentives for taking part, while particularly targeting underage participants.