Artist Pyotr Pavlensky sits inside a defendants' cage before a court hearing, in Moscow, Russia, June 8, 2016. REUTERS/Maxim Zmeyev
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A Moscow court on Wednesday released radical performance artist Pyotr Pavlensky but ordered him to pay a hefty fine for torching the door of Russia's security services, in a rare show of leniency by the authorities.A judge ordered the artist to pay 500,000 rubles ($7,800, 6,800 euros) after finding him guilty, saying the punishment was reduced due to the seven months Pavlensky had already spent behind bars. Pavlensky, a gaunt 32-year-old figure known for intensely physical performances to highlight Russia's restrictions on political freedoms, said he started the fire at the FSB to highlight its "method of continuous terror" to control Russian society.Prosecutors had asked the judge on Monday to impose a higher fine of 1.5 million rubles.
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