Photo: Vladislav Lonshakov / “Kommersant”
Blogger Ruslan Sokolovsky, who is on trial for catching pokemon in the Church, denied the existence of God, and gave Jesus Christ “qualities of the pokemon and zombies,” reads the indictment in the case
The prosecution in the case of Ruslan Sokolowski, who was arrested in September 2016 for catching pokemon in the Ekaterinburg Temple-on-Blood, built on research, which at the end of January 2017 was held by the experts of Ural state pedagogical University. As follows from the materials of the criminal case that was read by RBC, the experts came to the conclusion that blogger was humiliated religious dignity with stylized motet obscene language. Sokolowski also showed disrespect to the temple, his servants and Jesus Christ, whom he called “rare pokemon”.
Sokolovsky was placed in a detention center in September 2016 after he published online a couple of videos. One of them, blogger was playing Pokemon Go (the game uses augmented reality: players are looking for of pokemon hidden in the real world) in the Church, while others criticized the ROC for the clericalization of Russian society. In February, a blogger, was placed under house arrest. On 15 February the case was transferred to Verkh-Isetskiy district court of Yekaterinburg.
The prosecution Sokolowski filed under articles “violation of the right to freedom of conscience and religion”, “inciting hatred or enmity” and “trafficking of special technical means intended for secret information” (part 1 and part 2 of article 148, part 1 of article 282, article 138.1 of the criminal code). Only in the case of 17 episodes.
According to investigators, the blogger has committed crimes since may 2013 to September 2016, posting of online videos called “Perfect marriage”, “hate mail. Believers”, “Muslims Suicide on the exam”, “Patriarch, you’re…!”, “Sokolovsky in jail for catching pokemon”, “flew Into space, the Chechens have not seen” “Joined a cult”, “Sokolowski in jail for catching pokemon (Go Pokemon)”, “Catch pokémon in the Church” and “hate mail-feminists”. Also, the blogger illegally acquired special technical means intended for secret receipt of information – a ballpoint pen with a mounted video camera.
The investigation did the investigator for particularly important cases of the Anton Dosmagambetov, and operational support — regional Center for combating extremism of the MIA and FSB Department for the Sverdlovsk region. Sokolowski himself pleaded not guilty and noted that it is not planning to offend anyone, and didn’t want to humiliate human dignity.
“Bestiary of Japanese mythology”
Experts analyzed all the videos and came to the conclusion that in the studied materials is formed a negative image of a group of persons on religious, ethnic and social grounds. As stated in the materials of the case, Sokolowski attributed to the Muslims “desire to follow the ancient customs, beliefs, traditions that are negatively evaluated modern culture” and encouraged their deportation. A faithful blogger described “through manipulative techniques of “ridicule” and “labelling”.
Sokolovsky, according to the examination, “denying the existence of God, the founders of Christianity and Islam, were ridiculed by the relevant religious precepts and rites of Muslims,” has given “Jesus Christ the qualities of the pokemon as heroes not only in computer games and animated series, but also representatives of the bestiary of Japanese mythology, as well as qualities the walking dead — zombies.”
Thus, experts have seen that the videos are believers in God were “metaphorically presented as the patients are idiots and are not on friendly terms with a head.” Patriarch Kirill stresses in materials became the object of humiliating assessments: he “condemned not only as an individual but also as the Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church, as a Central representative of the group of priests”.
“Vzaimootnoshenia Orthodox chants and rude foul language is a humiliation of Orthodox tradition, that in the view of the Orthodox is the Holy Ghost, is associated with what religious awe,” — said in the indictment. Also, the experts found in the movie “the Perfect marriage” “the negative assessment of the Christian vision of the family with the use of stylistically reduced the metaphorical images associated with feces, as well as mocking rethinking the situation of the immaculate conception”.
The act of blasphemy
In fact there is testimony and a few witnesses who found the actions Sokolovsky offensive. For example, witness Mikhail Sergeyev watched videos of the blogger, and “he did not like the gestures and manner of speaking, narcissistic supply”, and “phrase, which Sokolowski says in the Church and on the Church sound [Sergeyev] arrogant”.
Witness Ovchinnikov examined records Sokolowski and came to the conclusion that the accused was “very cynical, negative and ugly comments about how there is no God, Orthodox Christians are mentally retarded people, and Christianity is a sect.”
Finally, the witness Safonov, head of the legal service of the Ekaterinburg diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church, said that one of the videos “shows the act of blasphemy committed in one of the main temples in their diocese”.
“Personally, as a believer, a man who graduated from the Seminary and working in the diocese, this movie deeply offended: first, by comparing the Central Personality of his faith — the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, the Lord Jesus Christ — with “pokemon” (pocket monster); second, the fact that in the video the process of “catching pokemon” was accompanied by containing foul songs, sung in the manner of Church hymns, for him it is crazy to hear; third, the very fact a game to the phone in the Temple-on-Blood the murder of the Holy Royal family”, — retold readings and case materials.
Examination of the FSB
Lawyer Alexey Sokolovsky Bashmakov asked to exclude several studies from the case. As stated in the application dated February 15, which is available to RBC, two expert forensic laboratories of the regional FSB do not match, according to the counsel, the questions put to them.
Also Bashmakov thinks should be eliminated and the key examination, which was prepared by the Ural state University. “The experts went beyond its competence: the religious part is filled with legal conclusions and linguistic judgments, the conclusions of the psychological content. Linguist makes theological insights, and analyzes the subject of his research,” reads the petition.