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Bloodhound Gang abuses Russian flag, now face charges

Bloodhound Gang bassist Jared Hasselhoff faces 'inciting hatred' charges in Russia for shoving a flag down his pants. Bloodhound Gang members could get five years in prison.

By Vladimir SoldatkinReuters / September 11, 2013

Bassist Jared Hasselhoff of the American rock group Bloodhound Gang is seen pushing the Russian white-blue-red tri-color flag into his pants during a concert in the city of Odessa July 31, 2013, in this still image taken from an amateur video.

REUTERS/Amateur video via Reuters TV

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Two of the members of the American rock group Bloodhound Gang have been named as suspects in Russia for "inciting hatred."

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In July, the group's bassist Jared Hasselhoff shoved the country's flag into his underpants during a gig in the Ukraine. That act got him barred from a music festival in Russia.

The incident took place when the band, famous for its sexually explicit songs and on-stage antics, played a concert in Ukraine. On a video, posted on YouTube, Hasselhoff is seen pushing the Russian white-blue-red tricolour into the front of his pants and then pulling it out of the back.

"Don't tell Putin!" he said to the applause of the audience in the city of Odessa.

Moscow reacted angrily, barring the band from performing at a festival in the Krasnodar Black Sea region, also known as Kuban. The event was held on August 1-7.

"I spoke to the Krasnodar region authorities. Bloodhound Gang is packing their suitcases. These idiots will not perform in Kuban," Russian Culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky said on Twitter.

The incident happened against the background of a deepening rift in relations between Russia and the United States including the furor over the US fugitive spy agency contractor Edward Snowden who was granted asylum by Moscow this week.

Bloodhound Gang, famous for their provocative songs such as "You're Pretty When I'm Drunk," "I Wish I Was Queer So I Could Get Chicks" and "Kiss Me Where It Smells Funny?", apologized for the flag incident, according to local press.

The BBC reports that the Russia's Investigative Committee, similar to the Russian FBI, is investigating Hasselhoff and the group's front man Jimmy Pop. In a statement on the committee's website, the pair were referred to using their real names Jared Hennegan and James Franks.

The charges the two face carry a maximum sentence of five years.

( Editing by Pravin Char)

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