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MOSCOW - A Russian court placed opposition leader Alexei Navalny under house arrest for at least two months and barred him from using the Internet or speaking to the media.

Navalny, an outspoken critic of President Vladimir Putin and a leader of anti-Kremlin protests in 2011-2012, denounced the Friday ruling as baseless and said it was meant to silence him.

On Monday, Navalny was once of more than 100 protesters detained outside a Moscow courthouse where they were demonstrating against the prosecution of seven defendants who were arrested at a 2012 rally against Putin.

Their pleas fell on deaf ears however as the judge sentenced seven defendants to prison terms ranging from two-and-a-half to four years for attacking police officers.

- Reuters

Russian opposition activist Alexei Navalny, center, is surrounded by police officers as he leaves a court in Moscow on Feb. 25.Alexander Zemlianichenko / AP