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Lawyer: Russian Court Overturns Acquittal Of Gulag Historian

Russian historian Yury Dmitriyev
Russian historian Yury Dmitriyev

A regional court has overturned a verdict that cleared Russian historian Yury Dmitriyev of child pornography charges, setting up a retrial, his lawyer says.

In comments to reporters June 14, defense lawyer Viktor Anufriyev called the decision by the Karelia Supreme Court "unlawful and not based on criminal legislation."

Dmitriyev, a human rights activist who helped uncover mass graves of gulag prisoners executed in the 1930s, was acquitted by a local court in April.

Prosecutors had charged the 62-year-old after authorities found 49 naked photographs of his adopted daughter on his computer.

But Dmitriyev testified that the photos were taken because medical workers had asked him to monitor the health and development of the girl, who was malnourished and ailing when Dmitriyev and his wife took her in as a foster child.

His supporters said the case was brought against Dmitriyev, a member of the Russian human rights group Memorial, because he exposed a side of history that complicates the Kremlin's glorification of the Soviet past.

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