“… the truth is that as a man’s real power grows and his knowledge widens, ever the way he can follow grows narrower: until at last he chooses nothing, but does only and wholly what he MUST do…”

Ursula K. Le Guin, A Wizard of Earthsea (1968)

This website has been created to provide reliable information for two groups of people: [1] those who know something about the Dmitriev case and want to know more; and for [2] those who have heard little or nothing about the man and the alleged crimes for which he is currently on trial in Petrozavodsk.

In an extended interview in 2015, a year before his arrest, Yury Dmitriev quoted from Ursula le Guin’s Wizard of Earthsea (above) to describe how and why his life has followed the path it did.

If you want a quick update on the case, we suggest you first read Halya Coynash’s overview of the case since 13 December 2016, The Case so Far.  It was up to date as of 27 December 2017. Events are still unfolding, so look also at the Home Page for subsequent developments.


For more detail consult the following  documents on this website: the biographical note on Yury Dmitriev and the various Background articles (the Charges, declaration by the Presidential Council on Human Rights, etc). To follow up on any issue raised in these basic documents and to see them in chronological context go to the Timeline, which lists original articles and reports, translated in whole or in part from Russian sources, from December 2016 to the present. (Coverage of the case outside Russia can be found at Foreign media.)

If that is enough to convince you, as we believe, that this is a politically-motivated trial, and that the charges against Yury Dmitriev are false, we urge you to join hundreds of others and sign the petition on Change.org.


There are several ways of locating information on this website, through facilities located mainly on the right-hand side bar of the screen.

Working from the top downwards, you will find

[1] a general “Search” facility;

[2] “Recent Posts”; and,

to aid more focused and directed enquiries,

[3] “Type of Entry” (drop-down menu, Category) and “Posts by Subject; video clips by profession” (Tag cloud).

The Category and Tag lists include publications by type (news report, comment, background, etc) by source and author (Anna Yarovaya, Sergei Markelov, Novaya gazeta, New Times, Radio Echo Moskvy) or English-language news source (Facebook pages, Rights in Russia, Russian Reader, etc).


A list of those who have directly contributed to the appearance and existence of this website is provided in our Acknowledgements.

We are happy to respond to queries from the media, other organisations and the general public: emailto:crowfoot@uwclub.net.

This website is conceived as analogous to the classic newspaper of record. We do not allow instant comments. If you send us a letter about the site or the Dmitriev Affair we will consider publishing it in part or in whole.

The Dmitriev Affair is already challenging the earlier Khodorkovsky-Lebedev trials, and the repeated attempts to gain justice for the murdered Anna Politkovskaya, for the right to be considered Russia’s “Trial of the 21st Century”. We shall continue to update and expand this website until 5 August 2018, if not for a longer period of time.

John Crowfoot

18 October 2017
(update – 5 November 2017)