Marina Ovsyannikova, who was feared missing after she protested the Ukraine war on a live Russian broadcast, was actually in court with her lawyer. She was last seen during that anti-war protest and according to her lawyers, they searched all night for the Russian journalist.

Ovsyannikova is being charged with “organizing an unauthorized public event,” and could be punished with a fine, 10 days in jail or community service. A Russian court recently ruled that Ovsyannikova will be charged 30,000 rubles for a video message she posted about the Ukraine war. The Russian journalist has pled not guilty to the public event charges.

During a Monday broadcast on Russia’s Channel One, Marina Ovsyannikova ran onto camera holding an anti-war poster and started chanting “Stop the war, no to war.” The poster, in a mixture of Russian and English, said, “Stop the war. Don’t believe propaganda. They’re lying to you.”

The protest happened during a live broadcast of Channel One’s Vremya, which is watched by millions of Russian citizens. Channel One is a state-owned news network and Ovsyannikova was a Russian TV editor for the network.

During Ovsyannikova’s protest, anchor Ekaterina Andreeva was trying to read the news. The network quickly stopped the broadcast and switched to a video clip, according to footage from the Channel One broadcast. The Russian journalist was taken into custody by authorities, and her lawyers say that she was being held for over 12 hours.

“Marina Ovsyannikova has not yet been found. She has been imprisoned for more than 12 hours,” human rights attorney Pavel Chikov tweeted. “The pre-investigation check does not provide grounds for detention and imprisonment.” The lawyer added that he is actively looking for her.

Another lawyer, Anastasia Kostanova, told BBC Russia that she had tried to call Marina Ovsyannikova, but she never picked up. The lawyer believed that authorities were trying to hide the Russian journalist from her lawyers, so she had no access to legal representation.

She said, “This means that they are hiding her from her lawyers and trying to deprive her of legal assistance and, apparently, they are trying to prepare the most stringent prosecution.”

Ovsyannikova’s lawyers feared that the Russian journalist was going to be charged with a new criminal law that bans citizens from spreading “fake news” about the Ukraine conflict or calling Russia’s presence in Ukraine an “invasion.” If convicted, Marina Ovsyannikova could face up to 15 years in prison.

Marina Ovsyannikova missing
Marina Ovsyannikova, a Russian journalist for Channel One, protested the Ukraine war during broadcast. Many fear that she is now missing. (Credit: Twitter)

Before her anti-war protest on Channel One, Marina Ovsyannikova recorded a video and explained why she was against the war in Ukraine. “Unfortunately, I have been working at Channel One during recent years, working on Kremlin propaganda,” Ovsyannikova said. “And now I am very ashamed. I am ashamed that I’ve allowed the lies to be said on the TV screens. I am ashamed that I let the Russian people be zombified.”

The Russian journalist went on to say that her father was Ukrainian, and her mother was Russian and that they weren’t enemies. She called for other Russian citizens to protest the war and stand up to their country.

Since her anti-war protest, Marina Ovsyannikova’s bravery has been praised by people across the world. In one of his regular video broadcasts, Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy thanked “the woman who entered the Channel One studio,” and praised her for “telling the truth.”

James Cleverly, a junior minister for Britain’s Foreign Office, spoke to the BBC on Tuesday and said that the U.K. government is worried about Ovsyannikova’s safety. He also praised the journalist for her brave acts.

He said, “These acts of defiance within Russia … these are incredibly important,” he said. “It shows a huge degree of bravery for those individuals to protest in what is, we know, an oppressive authoritarian state. It’s really important that the Russian people understand what is being done in their name.”

According to the European Commission, over 14,000 Russian citizens have been detained for protesting the war in Ukraine. These protests have happened in over 140 cities in Russia.