A criminal case is opened based on the fact of a battery of a resident of Kuban at the police department due to his shooting of people being apprehended at the beach with his mobile phone

News

19 April 2021

The Investigative Committee initiated a criminal case based on the fact of the battery of Andrey Likhman from Timashevsk at the police department in May 2019 – according to Likhman, he was beaten up because was shooting how the police officers were apprehending people on the beach, and later on he refused to give them his mobile phone. Before that, the investigators issued six dismissals of claims to initiate criminal proceedings, which after the complaints of the lawyers with the Committee Against Torture were quashed as illegal ones.

On 15 November 2019, Andrey Likhman from Timashevsk of the Krasnodar Territory applied for legal assistance to the Committee Against Torture. He told human rights defenders, that in the evening of 31 May 2019 he and acquaintances of his were having rest at the city beach in Timashevsk and witnesses how two men who were also resting at the beach, were apprehended with application of force and special equipment by the police officers. He and other beachgoers were shooting this with their mobile phones.

According to Likhman, half an hour after the apprehended were taken away, the police officers returned to the beach and started to make inquiries with the beachgoers who of them was shooting the incident. According to Andrey, the police officers requested that he came to them and demanded that he gave them his phone. After he refused to do so, the police officers demanded that he went with them to the police department. According to Likhman, he started to shoot what was going on, after that the police officers brought him down on the ground and attempted to seize the phone using force, and then handcuffed him, put inside the police van and took him away. He managed to give his phone to a friend of his, from whom it was later collected by the police officers.

Likhman was taken to the police department for the Timashevsky District.

“I was taken to the metal door with a sign above it: “Criminal Investigations”. When the door opened, and I was taken to the doorway, I felt a blow in the area of the right ear. As I understand, the blow was made by hand. Because of this blow in my ear I stumbled and nearly fell, at the same time I moved forward. The police officer – the driver of the vehicle in which I was taken to the police department – was already there. Standing facing me, he hit me with a fist of his right hand in the area of my left eye. I felt pain. Another police officer hit me with his right foot at my right foot. Because of this blow in my right foot I fell on the floor. After that, the police officers, who surrounded me, started to beat me all over my body with their feet. At some point of time I passed out. It happened after I received a blow with a foot in the right side of my face”, – Likhman recalls.

On the same night, the police officers took Andrey to the Timashevskaya Central District Hospital for medical examination aiming at establishing whether he was in the state of alcohol intoxication – he was not.

In the morning of 1 June, a protocol on administrative violation under part 1 of Article 19.3 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Russian Federation (“insubordination to the legal order of a police officer”). The court declared Likhman to be guilty and sentenced him to 12 days of administrative arrest.

Prior to being taken to court, Andrey was brought to the city hospital, where doctors diagnosed him with the following bodily injures: “Bruises of the soft tissues of the face, abrasions of the back”.

On 18 July, a criminal case was opened with regard to Andrey Likhman under part 1 of Article 318 of the Criminal Code of the RF (“applying force against a person in a position of authority”). Subsequently, the court declared Andrey to be guilty and sentenced him to two years of conditional term.

On 1 August, Andrey Likhman applied to the Investigative Committee with regard to the fact of the battery by the police officers.

On 5 September, investigator with the Timashevsky Interdistrict Investigative Department with the Investigative Committee of the RF for the Krasnodar Territory Maksim Frolov dismissed the claim to open a criminal case with regard to an application from Andrey Likhman concerning the police battery. The investigators issued five more dismissals, which were subsequently quashed, based on human rights defenders’ applications, as illegal ones.

In February and March 2021, the lawyers with the Committee Against Torture applied to the superiors of the Investigative Department for the Krasnodar Territory with applications against the investigators’ red tape. As a result, the Investigative Committee superiors gave instructions on conducting additional checking activities.

On 12 April, Senior Investigator with the Timashevsky Interdistrict Investigative Department of the Investigative Committee of the RF for the Krasnodar Territory Dmitry Ulyanov initiated criminal proceedings under on grounds of the elements of crime provided for in item “a” of Part 3 Article 286 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (“abuse of office using violence”) with regard to unidentified police officers of the Department of the Interior of Russia for the Timashevsky District.

Today, human rights defenders received a copy of this ruling.

“We are definitely satisfied with the fact that the criminal case with regard to the case of illegal use of violence by the police officers against Andrey Likhman is opened, and he is declared a victim, – lawyer with the Committee Against Torture Ilya Platonov comments. – Now we shall continue to represent Likhman’s interests in the framework of the opened criminal case and will be insisting that the investigators carry out an effective investigation”.