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Crucifixion Artist Flees Russia, Fears Jail as Censorship Rises

“Russian prison means death for people like me,” said Oleg Mavromatti, a filmmaker and performance artist.

Mavromatti, 45, fled to Bulgaria in 2000 after the Russian Orthodox Church complained about a movie he was shooting in which he is crucified. He was accused of violating a criminal code that includes inciting religious hatred and denigrating the church, an offense punishable by as much as five years in prison.