Pokémon Go

Russian man arrested for playing Pokémon Go in church

Blogger faces up to five years in prison for blasphemy.

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Pokémon Go is still popular, and that's probably why the Russian blogger Ruslan Sokolovsky made a video where he plays the game in several exotic locations. Among these were the city Yekaterinburg's Church of All Saints.

Being an self-proclaimed atheist, this act was seen as blasphemy in the eyes of the Russian Orthodox Church, and he has since been arrested for violating the countries strict anti-blasphemy laws.

The government owned channel Russia 24 has warned against playing Pokémon Go in churches before now. Last saturday the Russian government stated they would detain Sokolovksy for two months while investigating the case.

According to the news agency Medusa, Sokolovksy is risking a five year sentence if convicted. A spokesperson for the Russian Orthodox Church, named Vladimir Legoyda (via NowPlaying), says that it was the provocative nature of the film rather than the act of playing Pokémon Go that caused the arrest:

"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, who works in the style of Charlie Hebdo."

The investigation is ongoing, but if you feel like supporting Sokolovsky you'll probably find a way on social media by searching for #FreeSokolovsky.

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