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Russian Police Seeking Other Members of Pussy Riot

Authorities mum on who and how many they're looking for

Yekaterina Samutsevich, Maria Alyokhina, and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova of Pussy Riot during a court hearing in Moscow
Natalia Kolesnikova/AFP/GettyImages
August 20, 2012 3:10 PM ET

Russian police are searching for additional members of feminist punk band Pussy Riot involved in the February "punk prayer" protest against Russian President Vladimir Putin that resulted in prison sentences last week for three women who participated, Reuters reportsPolice haven't said who or how many more people they're looking for, or whether they face arrest or charges. Five masked protestors were part of the 40-second demonstration inside Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral, though only three were arrested and tried. Pussy Riot is said to have more than 10 members.

Mark Feigin, a lawyer for Pussy Riot, believes authorities have surveillance footage from the February protest and are already aware of the other women's identities. He said the search is a tool intended to put pressure on any members of the group who plan to continue protesting. "If you put some unidentified persons on the wanted list, then you can arrest whoever you want in a balaclava," he said.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, Maria Alyokhina, 24, and Yekaterina Samutsevich, 30, were sentenced Friday to two years in prison for "hooliganism" over the protest. The band released a new single, "Putin is Lighting the Fires of Revoluion," just hours after the convictions, and Pussy Riot have gained the support of musicians including MadonnaPaul McCartney and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

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