Wednesday, 26 April 2017 10:15

Debian developer held over alleged role in riots

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A Debian developer in Russia, who runs a Tor exit node at his home and was arrested earlier this month on suspicion of organising riots, will be held in custody until June 8.

Dmitry Bogatov was arrested on 6 April in connection with anti-Russia protests in Moscow on 2 April.

The panel investigating the protests claims Bogatov posted several incitory messages on the sysadmin.ru forum; for example, one claim said he was asking people to bring "bottles, fabric, gasoline, turpentine, foam plastic" to Red Square, according to a post at Hacker News.

The messages were sent in the name of one Airat Bashirov and happened to be transmitted through the Tor node that Bogatov was running.

The Hacker News post said Bogatov's lawyer had produced surveillance video footage to show that he was elsewhere at the time when the messages were posted.

It added that messages in the name of Bashirov has continued to appear on the forum after Bogatov was arrested, with the last being on 11 April.

Bogatov, 25, is a mathematics teacher at Moscow Finance and Law University.

In a message, the Debian GNU/Linux project said it was concerned about Bogatov's arrest and hoped that he received fair treatment and due process.

"In the meantime, the Debian Project has taken measures to secure its systems by removing Dmitry's keys in the case that they are compromised," the message said.

"The Debian Project honours his good work and strong dedication to Debian and Free Software, and we hope he is back as soon as possible to his endeavours. We send our full support to him and his family."

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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