A Moscow judge held Thursday that a video montage that spread across the Internet like wildfire of Pussy Riot's now infamous punk rock prayer qualifies as extremist material, thus upholding prosecutors' efforts to have the footage banned in Russia.
The Russian Legal Information Agency (RAPSI) hosted live text broadcast of the trial, which was held in Moscow's Zamoskvoretsky District Court, and was presided over by Judge Marina Musimovich.
The video in question is a montage of the girls' performance of their punk rock protest song from the altar of Christ the Savior Cathedral in central Moscow shortly before the March 2012 presidential elections which were to return prime minister Putin back to the presidency. Dancing around raucously in brightly colored balaclavas and mini-dresses, and executing a series of high kicks, the Pussy Riot members shouted requests to the Virgin Mary to "chase Putin out." The video was posted online and evoked a massive public outcry.
A representative of Google's Russian office said YouTube would not take any decision regarding the clips until it had received official documents, Russia's Interfax news agency reports.
The court said it had based its ruling on conclusions by a panel of experts who studied the footage, showing band members in colourful dresses, tights and ski masks dancing in front of the altar of Christ The Saviour Cathedral.
Judge Marina Musimovich said the video had "elements of extremism".
"In particular, there are words and actions which humiliate various social groups based on their religion," she added.
Any appeal against the verdict has to be made within one month.
Yekaterina Samutsevich, a third member of the group who had her sentence suspended on appeal, said she would try to lodge one, adding: "Today's verdict was to be expected."
However, the court's press secretary suggested Ms Samutsevich was excluded from making an appeal as she had not attended the court's proceedings.
"The prosecutor and the justice ministry of the Russian Federation are considered to be the participants in these proceedings," Yevgenia Pazukhina told the Russian legal news agency Rapsi.