MOSCOW — A Russian theater manager accused of embezzlement was released from custody Monday following public outrage that he remained in detention despite acute health problems.
Alexei Malobrodsky, the former director of Moscow's Gogol Center, was arrested in June on charges of embezzling public funds allocated for a theater production. Last week, he was put in emergency care with a cardiac condition.
The Investigative Committee, Russia's top state investigative agency, said Monday that Malobrodsky was freed from custody on the condition that he remains in Moscow. It added the decision was made in view of Malobrodsky's age and health problems.
The 60-year old Malobrodsky worked together with Kirill Serebrennikov, a prominent Russian director who faces allegations in the same case. Serebrennikov has been under house arrest since August.
Both Serebrennikov and Malobrodsky deny the embezzlement charges, which have been viewed by many in Russia as punishment for Serebrennikov's iconoclastic views and raised fears of a return to Soviet-style censorship.