«Exceptional brutality and sadism»: the Orenburg Court passed a guilty verdict for three ex-police officers for torture   


26 May 2022

Today, on 26 May, the Leninsky Court of Orenburg passed a guilty verdict for ex-police officers Ivan Kudinov, Denis Fedorov and Sergey Kornilov for torture that they performed 12 years ago. The judge pointed out “exceptional brutality and sadism” of the crime.   

Kudinov and Kornilov are sentenced to 4 years of jail time and Fedorov – to 4.5 years. All the three are deprived of the right to work in civil service for 2.5 years. Due to expiry of the period of limitations for brining to criminal responsibility, all the three are released from punishment.  

– Thus, the state acknowledged the fact of tortures of Zontov, Pikalova and Gumerova – this is the crucial and most important aspect of the whole work on this case. Now, when the mechanisms of the ECHR legal remedy are inaccessible for the Russian citizens, we need a fair court system more than ever, – head of the Orenburg branch of the CAT Albina Mudarisova comments.  

In May 2010, Kudinov, Fedorov and Kornilov apprehended and beat up three residents of Orenburg: Yury Zontov, Sveltana Gumerova and Larisa Pikalova. They were subsequently diagnosed with numerous hematomas and bruises. The medics also diagnosed Pukalova with a closed craniocerebral injury and a brain concussion, and Gumerova had a flock of her hair torn out.

Having yielded to torture, the apprehended incriminated themselves. Soon, it was established that Zontov, Gumerova and Pikalova were not involved in these crimes, and the criminal prosecution is dismissed despite the confessions obtained from them.

Only 9 years after the incident the victims applied to the Committee Against Torture. Human rights defenders managed to have the criminal case opened and win 350 000 rubles of compensation for illegal criminal prosecution for the benefit of the applicants. The guilty ex-police officers are brought to responsibility, however, they are released from punishment due to the expiry of the period of limitations.  

Notably, the two defendants were previously brought to criminal responsibility for such crimes: Kornilov for blackmail and abuse of office, and Makaev for abuse of office and infliction of death by negligence.   

– During the verdict announcement judge Aleksandra Aleksandrova emphasized that the defendants “undermined the authority of the law enforcement”, – Mudarisova commented. – It is important that as many police officers as possible learn about this verdict and make conclusions.  

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