Alexei Polihovich

Year of birth: 1990

Charge: Participation in mass disorder and use of violence against  authorities; sentenced to 3 years 6 months

Currently imprisoned in:
Prison colony IK-14, Mordovia

Lawyers: Alexey Miroshnichenko, Jean Semenov



Alexei Polihovich 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.

Alexei Polihovich is a student of the Russian Social State University and the major courier of a Moscow insurance company. An anarchist, he actively participated in various non-violent social protests, among them the famous 'Occupy' actions including protests against the destruction of the forests around Moscow.

Polihovich was arrested on 25th of July 2012 on the basis of a policeman's' statement that he was helping the people seized by the soldiers of OMON (a 'special' unit) to break free and also on the "evidence" of a photo of a fellow in a balaclava who was alleged to be him. His lawyer requested character statements from his place of work and of study. Both characterized him as a calm, very stable, non-aggressive person, a diligent worker and student with particular interest in humanities disciplines. Further more, it transpired that Polihovich was invited to enroll in the Federal Security Service after he finished his service in navy. A group of navy veterans has made a statement in support of their comrade and condemned the whole 'Swamp process' demanding the charges against him be dropped but to no avail.

On 13th of June 2013 Alexei Polichovich married his fiancée Tatiana in jail.