16 Year-Old Russian Boy Wins Gay Propaganda Court Case

In an unexpected ruling, the Russian court dismissed the case against Maxim Neverov.

16 year-old Maxim Neverov sits at a table addressing the camera

Considering Russia’s notoriously homophobic views, the news that 16 year-old Maxim Neverov’s ‘gay propaganda’ case has been dismissed in court can only be considered a huge win for LGBT+ rights. 

Neverov, the first minor to be prosecuted under the gay propaganda law, was initially fined 50,000 rubles for posting pictures of topless men hugging to his social media account. The law covers anything regarded by authorities as an attempt to promote homosexuality to minors, it has also been used to stop Pride events, public talks and forms of activism. 

Neverov appealed, and the judge, eventually finding there was not enough evidence to establish guilt, overturned the case. The result stunned him – “It was totally unexpected. I had a draft of a social media post ready saying ‘the court upheld the decision and that we’re ready to continue fighting for justice’ when the judge announced the ruling.”

His lawyer, Arytom Lapov, stated it was “a signal to the LGBT community that they can, and should, fight for their rights. People often think that there’s nothing they can achieve, but this case shows that they, in fact, can and should.”

Many believed there to have been darker motives behind the initial conviction of the 16 year-old. Earlier this year, Neverov attempted to organise a public event called Gays Or Putin in protest of the government’s treatment of the LGBT+ community. He applied to the city administration for permission, when they failed to give it, he went on to apply a total of 12 times. This garnered a lot of negative attention from the residents in his hometown of Biysk and was raised in the Duma – the local Russian assembly.

When Neverov’s case was brought to the Commission, the meeting was supposedly open to the public but supporters of the boy were not allowed to attend, and no recording of events were permitted either.

© 2018 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

Support GCN

GCN has been a vital, free-of-charge information service for Ireland’s LGBTQ+ community since 1988.

During this global COVID pandemic, we like many other organisations have been impacted greatly in the way we can do business and produce. This means a temporary pause to our print publication and live events and so now more than ever we need your help to continue providing this community resource digitally.

GCN is a registered charity with a not-for-profit business model and we need your support. If you value having an independent LGBTQ+ media in Ireland, you can help from as little as €1.99 per month. Support Ireland’s free, independent LGBTQ+ media.

0 comments. Please sign in to comment.