Supporters of the Russian female punk band Pussy Riot protest outside the Russian embassy on August 17, 2012 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
NATALIYA VASILYEVA, Associated Press
MOSCOW (AP) - A Moscow judge has sentenced each of three members of the provocative punk band Pussy Riot to two years in prison on hooliganism charges following a trial that has drawn international outrage.
Friday's sentence comes amid a wave of protests around the world in support of the feminist rockers. The judge said in the verdict that the three band members "committed hooliganism driven by religious hatred" and offended religious believers.
The three were arrested in March after a guerrilla performance in Moscow's main cathedral calling for the Virgin Mary to protect Russia against Vladimir Putin, who was elected to a new term as Russia's president two weeks later.
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