is one of 27 people who
are currently on trial because of their involvement in
the mass demonstration on 6th of May 2012. On that date,
immediately before President Putin's inauguration, about
100,000-120,000 people took part in a peaceful protest
in Moscow. The police suddenly blocked the way to
Bolotnaya (Swamp) Square where the SANCTIONED march was
to terminate thus provoking a clash with the protesters.
Then the police announced the demonstration was
cancelled and immediately attacked the protesters,
beginning to disperse them with the aid of batons and
tear gas. As a result, approximately 600 people were
arrested on the spot, hundreds were injured. Criminal
charges were initiated not against the unlawful police
officers but against the lawful protesters for
participating in mass disorder and acts of violence. 27
people were selected by the authorities to serve as
examples in a theatre of show-case prosecutions.
Stepan Zimin is a student of
Eastern Studies at the State University of
Humanities. He is engaged in historical recreation of
Slavic culture of the 10th century and blacksmith work. He is also
anarchist and antifascist, a participant of the movement
'Occupy' and protests against the destruction of the
forests around Moscow.
was arrested on the 8th of June in his apartment.
According to the prosecutor a radio transmitter,
balaclava, Molotov cocktail, "matching literature",
passports and other suspicious items were confiscated.
Later it transpired that Zimin in fact did not have a
passport which would allow him to travel abroad.
Zimin is accused of
throwing a piece of concrete which hit a policeman's
finger and broke it. The statements of the policeman are
contradictory. In the beginning he maintained that he
did not see the attacker but in one month changed his
opinion and pointed out Zimin. The testifying medical
expert concluded that the character of the policeman's
injury does not match with damage from being hit by the
piece of concrete. The finger was broken not because of
a collision with an object but because it was
twisted. In a similar fashion, another piece of evidence was
proved to be false: the confiscated "Molotov cocktail"
was found to be a bottle of paint solvent. Nevertheless, the judge
refused to move Zimin under a house arrest.
"You are right", wrote
Zimin to his friend, "The prison is also a school of
life, but the most important is that it would not become my second high education. It is hard to
see that the majority of people here are just as
innocent as I am. Everyone knows that I am innocent
including the detective but he is unable not to
fabricate the case because he is pressured from above."