Moscow court says opposition leaders must pay 1.2 million rubles in damages for traffic disruptions caused by peaceful protests
Moscow’s Koptevsky District Court has upheld a lawsuit brought by the state-owned bus company “Mosgortrans” against nine opposition leaders who advocated and organized an unpermitted protest in the capital on July 27. The defendants have been ordered to pay 1,218,591 rubles (about $18,630) for supposedly disrupting bus service and reducing the company’s revenue.
An investigation by Meduza published in mid-August found that Mosgortrans named bus routes in its lawsuit that couldn’t possibly have been affected by protesters.
Following opposition protests in Moscow in July and August, Mosgortrans, the city’s subway system, a taxi service, and the “Armenia” cafe have filed multiple lawsuits against protest organizers for more than 14 million rubles (more than $214,200) in damages. On September 5, the car leasing business “Fly Auto” also filed a 1-billion-ruble ($15.3-million) lawsuit against Alexey Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation, arguing that the business lost this much money in revenue, because of road closures caused by unlawful protests promoted by the organization.