The fine stems from a concert in 2012 in which Madonna stuck up for gay rights. Russia’s laws make it illegal to even speak in favor of the queer community under the guise of protecting children from corruption.
“I made this speech at a concert in St. Petersburg eight years ago,” Madonna said in an Instagram post. “I was fined 1 million dollars by the government for supporting the gay community. I never paid.”
Related: Daily Dose: Madonna, uncensored.
Video of the event shows scores of concert-goers holding up Pride Flags in the crowd. Madonna stands on stage with her dancers, making her final remarks as the crowd chants her name.
“It’s a very strange time in the world,” she said at the time. “I’m traveling around the world and I feel it in the air. I feel that people are becoming more and more afraid of people who are different. People are becoming more and more intolerant. It’s a very scary time but we can make a difference. We can change this. We have the power and we don’t have to do it with violence, we just have to do it with love.”
“Now I’m here to say that the gay community and gay people here and all around the world have the same rights to be treated with dignity, with respect, with tolerance, with compassion, with love,” she went on. “Are you with me? If you’re with me I want to see your pink armband. If you’re with me raise your arm and show your love and appreciation for the gay community.”
A sea of arms shot up in front of the singer, along with deafening yells of enthusiasm. Score yet another hit for Madonna.