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Pussy Riot punk could be transferred after court ruling

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(GlobalPost/GlobalPost)

The prison camp where Pussy Riot punk Maria Alyokhina is being held broke the law by keeping her in isolation for too long, prosecutors said Wednesday, raising the possibility she could be transferred to another prison.

Alyokhina, 24, is serving a two-year sentence in Corrective Labour Camp No.28 in the Perm region in the Urals mountains after her feminist punk-rock group staged a performance in a Moscow church in February last year.

Regional prosecutors said a court ruled last month that the prison camp acted illegally when it extended her term in an isolation cell beyond the maximum 90 days.

The prison camp must now either ensure her personal safety in a general cell or transfer her to another prison, they said.

The ruling came after Alyokhina's lawyers complained about hostile treatment from repeat offenders sharing her cell.

She had asked to be removed to isolation and kept there to escape her cellmates who she has said threatened to kill her.

A source at the regional prosecutors' office told the Interfax news agency that a decision on whether to move her would be taken by top prison service officials.

However Alyokhina's lawyer Irina Khrunova told TV Rain station her client did not want to move to another prison camp where she would have to build up relations with new officials and inmates.

The 2012 trial of Alyokhina and two other members of the provocative feminist band grabbed worldwide attention, with stars such as Madonna, Sting and Yoko Ono voicing their support.

Alyokhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova are both serving two-year terms for hooliganism motivated by religious hatred after the church performance, while a third member received a suspended sentence on appeal.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130403/pussy-riot-punk-could-be-transferred-after-court-ruling