MOSCOW -- Three feminist punk rockers in Russia may face years in prison for barging into Moscow's main cathedral to sing a song against Vladimir Putin as he set out to reclaim the presidency.

Wearing ski masks and miniskirts in garish colors, the Pussy Riot band members danced and high-kicked while belting out this refrain:

Virgin Mary, Mother of God, put Putin away.

Put Putin away, put Putin away.

The case has caused international outrage and split Russian society. Some say the women deserve to be punished for desecrating the Russian Orthodox Church and offending believers, while others insist that the women – who have already been in jail for five months – are being unfairly punished for their political beliefs.

The three women, all in their 20s, said their goal was to express their resentment over the church's open support for Putin's rule.

Pussy Riot first gained notoriety during the height of this winter's anti-Putin protests, when a video of their performance on Red Square became an Internet hit. Standing on top of a stone platform once used for reading out the czar's decrees, the women sang a song called "Putin Got Scared."

The refrain goes like this:

Revolt in Russia – the charisma of protest

Revolt in Russia – Putin got scared

Revolt in Russia – We exist!

Revolt in Russia – Riot! Riot!

As the trial nears the end, prosecutors on Tuesday called for three-year prison sentences, which they said was lenient because the hooliganism charges they face carry a maximum sentence of seven years. They said they took into account that two of the women have young children and that they have good character references.

Putin has criticized the punk rockers, but said their punishment shouldn't be "too severe." Speaking during a visit to the London Olympics last week, Putin suggested that the women should be grateful they didn't try such a stunt in Russia's Caucasus, which is predominantly Muslim.

"If they had desecrated some Islamic holy site, we wouldn't even have had time to take them into custody," Putin said.

Putin's comments triggered speculation that the Kremlin was trying to find a way to resolve the case without appearing weak or further angering either side.

The case against the three women – Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alekhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich – wrapped up on Wednesday. The judge said she will issue a verdict next week, on Aug. 17.

Earlier on HuffPost:

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  • In this Feb. 21, 2012, file photo, members of the Russian radical feminist group Pussy Riot try to perform at the Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow. (AP Photo/Misha Japaridze)

  • Feminist punk group Pussy Riot members, from left, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alekhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich sit in a glass cage at a court room in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012. (AP Photo/Misha Japaridze)

  • From left, Yekaterina Samutsevich, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alekhina, members of feminist punk group Pussy Riot sit behind bars at a court room in Moscow, Russia, Friday, July 20, 2012. (AP Photo/Misha Japaridze)

  • Yekaterina Samutsevich, right, a member of feminist punk group Pussy Riot is excorted to a court room in Moscow, Russia, Friday, July 20, 2012. (AP Photo/Misha Japaridze)

  • Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, right, and Maria Alekhina, background center, members of feminist punk group Pussy Riot are excorted to a court room in Moscow, Russia, Friday, July 20, 2012. (AP Photo/Misha Japaridze)

  • From left, Yekaterina Samutsevich, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alekhina, members of feminist punk group Pussy Riot sit behind bars at a court room in Moscow, Russia, Friday, July 20, 2012. (AP Photo/Misha Japaridze)

  • Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, center, a member of feminist punk group Pussy Riot is escorted to a court room in Moscow, Russia, Friday, July 20, 2012. (AP Photo/Misha Japaridze)

  • Feminist punk group Pussy Riot members, from left, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alekhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich sit in a glass cage at a court room in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

  • Nadezhda Tolokonnikova

    Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, foreground, a member of feminist punk group Pussy Riot greets her supporters as she is escorted to a court room in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

  • Maria Alekhina

    Maria Alekhina, second right, a member of feminist punk group Pussy Riot is escorted to a court room in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

  • Feminist punk group Pussy Riot members, from left at the background, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Yekaterina Samutsevich and Maria Alekhina are escorted to a glass cage at a court room in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012. (AP Photo/Misha Japaridze)