Russian parliament speaker concerned about journalist's case

The speaker of the upper house of the Russian parliament has raised concerns about a drug dealing case against a prominent investigative journalist.

Valentina Matviyenko, who is Russia's third most senior official after the president and prime minister, on Tuesday described the criminal inquiry into Ivan Golunov as "a really bad story." She said that she spoke to the prosecutor general who promised to take the case under his personal control.

Golunov, who works for the independent website Meduza, was beaten and kept in custody for 12 hours without a lawyer after he was stopped by police in Moscow on Thursday, according to his lawyer. He was transferred to house arrest following a public outpouring of support, but he still faces drug dealing charges.