ST. PETERSBURG, Russia – Several of the 30 people arrested following a Greenpeace protest in the Arctic have been brought to St. Petersburg courts for hearings on whether they will remain in Russian jails pending trial.
The Russian coast guard seized a Greenpeace ship on Sept. 18 and arrested everyone on board after the environmental activists tried to scale an offshore drilling platform owned by Russian state energy giant Gazprom.
Investigators have until Sunday to ask courts to extend the detention period for three months.
The first hearings are being held on Monday. Defense lawyers are asking for the detainees to be freed on bail or put under house arrest in a St. Petersburg hotel.
The 30 detainees are charged with hooliganism, which carries a maximum sentence of seven years.