Russia quashes jail sentence for actor after public outcry – RIA

FILE PHOTO: Defendant Pavel Ustinov, accused of using violence against an officer of Russia's National Guard during an unauthorized rally to demand free elections, and lawyer Anatoly Kucherena talk to the media outside a court building in Moscow, Russia September 26, 2019. REUTERS/Evgenia Novozhenina

A Russian court on Monday quashed the jail sentence of an aspiring actor whose conviction for injuring a police officer on the sidelines of an opposition protest triggered a public outcry.

The court gave Pavel Ustinov a one-year suspended sentence, reversing its earlier decision to jail him for more than three years – a rare reversal by the Russian judicial system.

Ustinov had already been freed on Sept. 20, pending the result of his appeal.

The 23-year-old was found guilty of injuring a police officer during his arrest at an Aug. 3 rally in Moscow.

He said he had not taken part in the protest. Footage showed him on the sidelines of the rally being grabbed by police and beaten with truncheons before being detained. One of the guardsmen could be seen falling over in the melee.