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Ballet dancer Pavel Dmitrichenko has begun his trial for throwing sulfuric acid into artistic director Sergei Filin in January and has pleaded not guilty.
BBC News reports that Dmitrichenko and two others, Yuri Zarutsky and Andrei Lipatov are on trial. Lipatov drove the getaway car while Zarutsky allegedly threw the acid. Dmitrichenko denies that he arranged the attack, a charge that could land all of them in jail for 12 years.
The trial has people curious and the small courtroom was filled with journalists as the three were brought into the courtroom in a cage. The trial was adjourned for a week due to Zarutsky's lawyer's absence.
Dmitrichenko smiled at his parents and said, "I do not admit that I am guilty," Reuters notes.
The trial shows the tensions at the Bolshoi Ballet as Dmitrichenko admits that he wanted Filin beaten up, but claims that he never said for acid to be used. His mother spoke at the trial saying, "Pasha is our third child. Our beloved son. The youngest and the most talented one. I think my son is not guilty."
Dmitrichenko has said that he spoke to Zarutsky about reported Bolshoi corruption and how Filin liked to be partial in his handing out of financial grants.
Filin, wearing dark glasses, attended the 238th ceremonial opening of the Bolshoi in September.
image: Wikimedia Commons