Anti-corruption campaigner Alexei Navalny has accused the Russian authorities of laying trumped up charges of embezzlement against him at the start of his trial.
Proceedings have been adjourned until April the 24th.
The 36-year-old denies the charges but says he expects to be convicted. A suspended sentence would be the best outcome, he says, although this would prevent him from standing in any elections.
The anti-corruption blogger says the charges are politically motivated and part of a clampdown on dissent by President Vladimir Putin.
Supporters gathered outside the court.
Alexei Navalny faces a ten year jail sentence if convicted of stealing 16 million roubles from a timber firm for which he was an adviser in 2009.