A man by the name of Dmitry Bogatov was arrested the first week of April under violation of section 3, article 212 of the Russian criminal code. Article 212 relates to inciting “mass riots.” While not responsible for committing the acts, Bogatov could face up to 3 years in prison after someone used his Tor exit node on April 2nd to call for protests in Moscow.
Bogatov was a professor at the Moscow Law and Finance University and an activist for open source software and personal privacy. The man pled not guilty during the hearing on April 10th and stated, “I am innocent. On the day mentioned in the charges, I was in a fitness club together with my wife. After that, I went shopping.” Video evidence from both places corroborates his story. At the moment the illicit activity was executed—he could be seen with his wife, Tatiana.
Another important aspect his defense attorneys noted is that the questionable posts from the forum user “Airat Bashirov” have continued even while being in law enforcement custody. Unfortunately, the prosecution’s request to hold Bogatov in police custody was granted. Dmitry Bogatov is expected to remain in police custody until at least June 8th when the court reconvenes. This Russian case is a reminder of the necessary use of caution when operating a Tor exit note from your home.