200 thousand rubles for tortures


06 July 2011

Yesterday the Kanavinsky district court of Nizhny Novgorod sustained the suit of Alexey Yakimov who had been tortured by officers of the Nizhegorodsky District Directorate of the Interior of Nizhny Novgorod in part and awarded him moral and material damages. Earlier the ICAT reported that the responsible policemen had been convicted and the verdict had entered into force. The court had sentenced operational investigators Oleg Koregin and Anatoly Timofeyev to three years of imprisonment.

The court held that the Russian Finance Ministry should pay Mr. Yakimov 200000 rubles as compensation of moral damage and 850 rubles as pecuniary damage.  

Alexey Yakimov is satisfied with the judgment and is not going to appeal.

It is still not decided whether the respondent party is going to lodge a cassation appeal, as the Russian system of human rights protection seems to have a controversial objective. It appears that the major task of our state bodies is to suppress citizens’ attempts to defend themselves from human rights abuses and restore their rights and interests at all levels, from instigation of criminal proceedings to the lawful claim of adequate compensation.   

This is what we can see in Yakimov’s case.  Although the court has studied and established all facts of the case in the context of criminal proceedings and all these facts are given in an effective judgment and are not questionable,   representatives of the Finance Ministry, Nizhny Novgorod Regional Administration of the Ministry of the Interior and Nizhegorodsky District Directorate of the Interior of Nizhny Novgorod have opposed the suit and urged the court not to sustain it in whole. 

Unfortunately, the ICAT once again has to admit that despite all attempts of state leaders to increase the effectiveness of the state system for human rights protection, real progress in this area leaves much to be desired. To achieve a dramatic improvement, one needs to invest much more efforts, and among other things, change the attitude of state agents to the problem. So far, representatives of the state, being the respondent party in civil proceedings, argue against lawful and grounded claims for compensation of damage inflicted by state agents.

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