The case appears to have more to do with the lopsided approach taken by prosecutors - eager to please the leadership in Moscow - in response to international pressure on Russia to clamp down on piracy.
"You know the president is always asked these questions at summits - evidently because of this, work has been stepped up," Alexander Troyanov, the district prosecutor pursuing the case, told The Associated Press.
But Putin himself has questioned the rationale behind the case. When it was raised by a reporter at his annual, nationally televised news conference this month, the president dismissed it with a colorful term that translates as "utter nonsense." As in fighting drugs, the manufacturers and producers should be targeted rather than the end user, he said.
Troyanov argued that the law makes no distinction - meaning Ponosov is fair game."Microsoft have apparently offered to put in a good word for him if he apologises to them and and acknowledge his guilt. That's big of them. The good guys insdie Microsoft - and there are many - must be tearing their hair out over this one.