Pussy Riot member Pyotr Verzilov, who rushed the field during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia final, was reportedly hospitalized on Wednesday.

By Kaelen Jones
September 12, 2018

Pussy Riot member Pyotr Verzilov was reportedly hospitalized and placed in intensive care on Wednesday, according to Russian outlet Meduza. 

Verzilov's family suspects he was poisoned, according to Meduza. He was taken to a hospital after he started losing his sight, speech and ability to move around.

During the 2018 FIFA World Cup final in Russia between France and Croatia, Verzilov was one of four members of the famous punk rock group who rushed the field dressed as police officersThe demonstration served as a call to release political prisoners, end illegal detentions at political rallies, stop the policing of people's political views on social media and push for more open political competition, according to The Guardian.

Pussy Riot members have repeatedly and prominently served as critics of Russian president Vladimir Putin's government.

Verzilov and the other detained members at the World Cup were sentenced to 15 days in prison. They were banned from sporting events for three years.

During the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Verzilov was one of two Pussy Riot members detained by police in the midst of a countrywide crackdown on gay rights activists at the time. A day later, when the group tried to perform under a sign advertising the Sochi Olympics, Cossack militia attacked them. The group ended its boycott of the Olympics the next day and did not protest during any major sporting events again until intervening at the World Cup.

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