Moscow's Interior Ministry said Friday police have opened a hooliganism investigation into Pyotr Pavlensky's Nov. 10 stunt, which involved the shock artist stripping nude and nailing his scrotum to the Red Square cobblestones as part of a performance he dubbed "Nail," RIA Novosti reported Friday.
Pavlensky said the stunt was a protest against what he described as apathy and political indifference among the country's citizens.
Police said Pavlensky could face up to five years in prison if he is tried and convicted.
Investigators had initially sought petty hooliganism charges against Pavlensky the day after the incident, but a judge ruled the documents submitted by police did not support the criminal accusations.
Teacher apologizes for showing sexual image of herself in class
Interpol investigating stolen passports on missing flight