For three months the investigators ignored application of a citizen from Moscow who complained that police officers hang him up on a chain


27 May 2016

Once again lawyers of the Committee for Prevention of Torture faced a very wide-spread problem in the investigators’ work of the Main Investigative Department of the Investigative Committee for Moscow. This time human rights defenders complained to the Head of the Investigative Department of South-East Administrative District of Moscow against the investigators of the Lefortovsky investigative department who ignored Dmitry Blinov’s complaint against the police torture for three months.

(Photo: Dmitry Blinov)

In December 2015 Dmitry Blinov applied for legal assistance to the Committee for Prevention of Torture. He told human rights defenders that on the night from 20 to 21 December the duty officer together with another police officer for the Youzhno-Portoviy District of Moscow hang him up on a chain. According to Blinov, in this way the police officers stopped his indignation about him being brought to the department for committing an administrative crime and put into a cell of the temporary detention facility.

Blinov himself described his sensations in the following way: «It hurt a lot. Due to a large weight shoulder joints were twisted. Wrists hurt a lot, too. I had a feeling that my hands will be torn away. My heels were raised, but I still could stand on my toes’ pads. There is a toilet next to the temporary detention cell, and a lot of people were passing by. I was hanging up for a long time, but I cannot say for how long exactly. For me it seemed like eternity».

According to Blinov, later on he was moved even higher, and for some time he even lost his consciousness.

«When a police officer unbuckled me I fell immediately, unable to stand, hit my head against the floor and damaged my nose», – Blinov reported.

In the middle of a night a report on administrative violation for being drunk and disorderly was drawn with regard to Blinov, after that he was released. A few hours after that Dmitry went to hospital. As a result of examination he was diagnosed with head’s soft tissue bruise and closed fracture of nose bone.
In two days time, on 24 December 2015, Dmitry Blinov together with lawyer of the Committee for Prevention of Torture submitted a crime report to the Lefortovsky Interdistrict Investigative Department of the Investigative Committee’ Chief Investigative Department for Moscow.

«Deputy Head of the Investigative Department Mr.Romanov assured Blinov that the investigators will try to do everything in their power in order to timely register all the evidence. However, the applicant faced a wide-spread practice which took roots in many investigative departments of Moscow. Despite the fact that the crime report is very important from the procedural point of view, the Investigative Committee’s officers prefer to make believe that it is a usual type of application, in relation to which it is not necessary to take any full-fledged procedural decisions, – lawyer of the Committee for Prevention of Torture Dmitry Piskounov emphasized. – As a result the investigative body does not start the check but instead issues a series of formal replies and puts a crime report into cold storage for months or even years».

In case of Dmitry Blinov his crime report was immediately redirected to the police as a usual application. It goes without saying that the law-maker did not vest the police officers with authority to perform a pre-trial investigation with regard to themselves, that is why they returned Dmitry’s complaint back to the Lefortovsky Investigative Department on 24 February 2016. However, the investigators did nothing to establish the circumstances of the incident till 21 March of this year.

As a result, having conducted only one verification activity three months after the application – by questioning Dmitry Blinov – investigator Konnov refused to initiate criminal proceedings.

«For some reasons, unknown to us, investigators of the Lefortovsky Investigative Department started the check only three months after they received a crime report. In addition to having received a serious stress in the police department, the victim had to wait until his application is looked into and some kind of response is given. With regard to this we applied to the Head of the Investigative Department of the South-East Administrative District of Moscow asking to check the actions of the investigator. We are certain that only a regular disciplinary practice can make the investigative bodies react competently to citizens’ signals concerning the crimes of officials», – Dmitry Piskounov comments.

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