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Russian vlogger could face 5-year jail for playing Pokemon Go in church

Russian vlogger could face 5-year jail for playing Pokemon Go in church

Every time we think Pokemon Go fever has simmered down and nothing crazy will happen now. But every time we come across different and at times a weird story. Recently, a case came into lime light highlighting the effects that the game is having on our lives. This time it’s a Russian YouTuber Ruslan Sokolovsky who is in hot water and could face up to five years in prison for playing Pokemon Go in a church.

Local authorities on Saturday detained Sokolovsky for 2 months after he uploaded a video on YouTube of himself playing the popular augmented reality game in Yekaterinburg’s Church of All Saints.

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Earlier, a state owned news channel had warned gamers not to play the game in Churches as it could land them in prison under the countries blasphemy laws. Article 282 of the Russian Federation Criminal Code, prohibits “incitement of hatred or enmity, as well as abasement of human dignity.”

Sokolovsky, who wanted to test how serious the Russian authorities were, uploaded the video on his YouTube channel which shows him standing in front of the Church expressing his doubt of being arrested for playing a simple game. “This is complete nonsense … Who could get offended if you’re just walking around with your smart phone in a church?”

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Soon after the video was posted, Russian authorities initiated an investigation leading to the arrest of the vlogger this weekend.

“It is clear that Mr Sokolovsky was not a casual passerby, who in a fit of gaming passion went into the temple, but rather a well-known young blogger in the city,” said Russian Orthodox Church spokesperson Vladimir Legoyda.

Russian YouTuber Ruslan Sokolovsky standing outside Yekaterinburg’s Church of All Saints

Further, Legoyda said it was the provocative nature of Sokolovsky’s video — and not playing the game itself — that led to his arrest.

However, the State Duma’s Religious Affairs Committee Head Jaroslav Nilov said that investigators have not been able to prove that the YouTube star violated the Russia’s anti-blasphemy law, calling his detention unnecessary.

“In my opinion, catching Pokémon is not an insult to religious feelings, because it is simply the use of a mobile phone application within religious buildings,” Nilov told RIA Novosti.

This article originally appeared on Gizmodo

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Courtesy : Express Tribune



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