Criminal cases based on the fact of two deaths at Nizhny Novgorod Penal Colony No.14 are resumed

Событие | Пресс центр

22 January 2018

Deputy Head of the Investigative Department of the Investigative Committee of Russia for the Nizhny Novgorod region Pavel Oleynik advised the lawyers with the Committee Against Torture about resuming the investigation of criminal cases based on the fact of deaths of two convicts at Penal Colony No.14 (the Nizhny Novgorod region, Sukhovobezvodnoye settlement). Investigation of these criminal cases is under supervision at the regional Investigative Department.     

As we have previously reported, in the end of the last year lawyer with the Committee Against Torture Sergey Shounin, during personal appointment with Deputy Head of the Investigative Department of Investigative Committee of Russia for the Nizhny Novgorod region Pavel Oleynik, informed him about inefficient investigation of deaths in Penal Colony No. 14.
   
This appointment resulted in response from Mr Oleynik, who, among other things, stated: “Examination of criminal cases showed that the investigation is incomplete, for which reason rulings on suspension of preliminary investigation with regard to them are quashed to conduct necessary investigative activities in full scope and to make a well-grounded procedural decision”.
 
According to the answer, the progress of the preliminary investigation on these criminal cases is supervised by the Investigative Department.   

On 15 September 2015 Sergey Kalyakin applied to human rights defenders for legal assistance – his son Aleksandr died in July 2012 in Penal Colony No.14. Extract from posthumous expert examination of Aleksandr Kalyakin testifies of numerous bodily injuries which were revealed on him: “Closed blunt craniocerebral injury, fractures of 5th, 6th ribs on the left and 5th on the right, 6 bruises of the back surface of the neck. 2 bruises of the gluteal region with hemorrhaging into soft tissues. Two bruises of the left lower leg.  Bruise of the right thigh. “Florid bruises” of the anterior abdominal wall, right shoulder, projections of the thigh joint. Bruise of the left part of the frontal region with hemorrhaging into soft tissues of the left part of the frontal region. Hemorrhaging into soft tissues of the lumbar region. Contused wound of the right external ear”.

That was also when, in September 2015, Nina Markova applied to human rights defenders asking to initiate public investigation based on the fact of violent death of her brother, Aleksandr Kulemin, in November 2014, at the same Penal Colony No.14. Kulemin started to serve the sentence at the same penal colony in October 2014, and as early as in November Markova received a telegram about the death of her brother.
  
Posthumous expert examination of Aleksandr Kulemin also registered numerous bodily injuries on his body: “Closed blunt craniocerebral injury, bruises of the frontal region, nose, extravasation of the upper lid of the left eye, hemorrhagings in the soft tissues of the head in the frontal region, in the  circumference of the left and the right  cerebral hemispheres (each 15 ml in volume), under soft  brain tunics on hemispherical surface of the left and right  frontal lobes, swell and cerebral compression, focal hemorrhaging with degeneration of cerebral tissue in the brainstem, closed indirect fractures of the 5-th, 6-th and 7-th ribs on the left, bruises of the left forearm, right forearm, in the area of the left elbow joint, the first finger of the right  foot, the second finger of the right foot, the first finger of the left foot, extravasation in the area of the right elbow joint”.  

Despite the described bodily injuries, the official special reports of Penal Colony No.14 superiors with regard to these deaths feature one and the same preliminary diagnosis: “cardiovascular inefficiency”.

The criminal case with regard to the death of Kalyakin was opened on 31 March 2015, with regard to the death of Kulemin – on 18 May 2015. According to the investigators, in both cases a crime under part 4 Article 111 of the Criminal Code of Russia (“intended infliction of grave bodily harm causing the victim’s death by negligence”) was committed.  

“The investigation of both criminal cases was suspended three times due to impossibility to identify the culprits. However, subsequently all the rulings on suspending were quashed by higher superiors due to incompleteness of the investigation, – lawyer with the Committee for the Prevention Sergey Shounin, representing the interests of the relatives of the deceased, comments. – I hope the fact that the investigation of these criminal cases is now monitored by the regional Investigative Department, will allow enhancing its efficiency to a significant degree and drawing closer to identification of all the culprits”.

As we have previously reported, in June 2015, after the check which revealed “the facts of violations in official activity”, head of Penal Colony No. 14 Vasily Voloshin was dismissed from office. On 16 July 2015, criminal case was initiated against him, and in October of the same year Vasily Voloshin was added to the federal, and later on, to the international wanted lists on a charge of committing a number of crimes against property.

Penal Colony No. 14 has been in the sphere of attention of human rights activists with the Committee Against Torture and members of Human Rights Observance in Detention Facilities Public Monitoring Committee for a long time.

The penal institution became notorious due to a large number of complaints against brutal treatment and tortures of convicts, as well as to numerous cases of forcing to confess using tortures and violent actions of sexual character.