A high-profile Russian protester has been charged with plotting mass disorder, a Russian state media outlet reported Friday.
He is Sergei Udaltsov, who has helped organize mass protests against President Vladimir Putin's rule, RIA Novosti said.
Udaltsov, the 35-year-old leader of the Left Front movement, is free but has been ordered not to leave Moscow.
The plotting charge comes from news footage that showed Udaltsov and two other Left Front members meeting a Georgian politician to discuss how to overthrow Putin. Udaltsov said the news footage is fake.
Media reports had speculated that Udaltsov could try to leave Russia before he received a summons.
"If anyone expected me to flee abroad, they were mistaken," Udaltsov said.
‚ÄúUdaltsov was under close observation, but at one point the people trailing him vanished,‚ÄĚ Left Front activist Alexei Sakhnin told journalists outside the headquarters of the Investigation Committee.
‚ÄúWe were given a clear signal. They expected him to flee to some civilized country and for us quit the political arena.‚ÄĚ