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Russian man faces year in prison for writing ‘God doesn’t exist’ online

In Vladimir Putin’s Russia, you may not be allowed to question God’s existence — at least not on social media.

Russian Viktor Krasnov, 38, could be jailed over an Internet exchange with two strangers in an online community during which he said that God doesn’t exist.

On Wednesday, Krasnov appeared in court in the southern city of Stavropol, where he stands accused of violating a 2013 law that made it a crime to offend the sentiments of religious people, news site Meduza reported. Lawmakers introduced the ban after Pussy Riot’s infamous punk protest inside a Moscow cathedral and the trial that followed.

If convicted, Krasnov could be sentenced to one year in a Russian prison.

During the exchange in question, which occurred on the Russian social network Vkontakte(In Contact) in October 2014, Krasnov wrote, “There is no God” after two other men, Dmitry Burnyashev and Aleksandr Kravstov, wrote about their views of traditional Orthodox Christian family values.

Krasnov also used some derogatory words to describe Jews and called the Bible a “collection of Jewish fairy tales.” But he’s not in trouble with the law for those remarks.

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