Police in Karelia have reportedly detained Yuri Dmitriev, the historian’s lawyer and daughter told the newspaper Novaya Gazeta. Officers apparently stopped his car as he tried to leave Petrozavodsk to visit a cemetery where one of his friends is buried.
The television network NTV reported that Dmitriev was detained for violating court-imposed travel restraints. A source told the station that the historian was supposedly planning to flee to Poland, which awarded him the Cross of Merit in 2015. Dmitriev denies these allegations, saying that his client doesn't even have a passport.
A source also told the news agency TASS that Dmitriev was detained for travel violations.
On June 14, the Karelian Supreme Court overturned Dmitriev’s April 5 acquittal. The Petrozavodsk City Court had found Dmitriev not guilty of creating child pornography and sexually abusing a minor under the age of twelve. Yuri Dmitriev is the 62-year-old director of the Karelian branch of the human rights organization “Memorial,” whose activists and scholars have faced police persecution across Russia. Dmitriev’s lawyer is sure that state prosecutors pressured his client's 12-year-old daughter and her grandmother into challenging the Petrozavodsk City Court’s non-guilty verdict.