The Investigative Committee initiated criminal proceedings with regard to the fact of brutal beating up of Andrey Popov from the Krasnodar Territory and shooting blanks at him by law-enforcement officers. Lawyers with the Committee Against Torture, representing the interests of the victim, are convinced that the criminal cases must be opened also with regard to the applications of the other two apprehended ones – they also complained of brutal battery and forcing to confess after the apprehension. As we have previously reported, during the public investigation, human rights defenders received a video record of the apprehension that captured the unjustified brutality of law-enforcement officers.
On 17 March 2021, Andrey Popov from the Rogovskaya village in the Krasnodar Territory applied to the Committee Against Torture for legal assistance. He told human rights defenders that on 10 March at about 3 a.m. he and a friend of his Sergey Duz’ came to Kalininskaya village to a farm of his acquaintance Nikolay Bondarenko, where they were apprehended and beaten up by law-enforcement officers.
“Myself and others were put on the ground face down and then they started to hit me in the head, body, arms and legs. Main hits were in the area of the kidneys and the head area. They applied the butts of machine guns with which they hit me in the area of my back. They also shot blanks in my back threatening to shoot me. After that we were taken to the police department”, – Popov informed.
Popov, Duz’ and Bondarenko were taken to the Department of the Interior for the Kalininsky District, where, according to Andrey, the law-enforcement officers started to beat him up, demanding that he confessed of thefts of cows and heating boilers.
“In the police room they started to demand that I wrote a full confession. Since I refused, one of the officers hit me in the area of my left eye. After that one of the police officers went out of the room and brought two Special Police Force officers with him who started to hit me a lot of times in my chest, my ribs, kidneys, legs. In total, I received about twenty blows. I agreed to write a full confession and the Special Police Force officers went out of the room”, – Aleksey describes.
Before Popov is put to the Temporary Detention Facility, officers of the Central District Hospital of the Vyselki District performed a medical examination of Popov and diagnosed him with a bruise of the soft tissues of the face and a contusion of the kidneys.
Later on, a criminal case against Andrey Popov and Sergey Duz’ was opened under item “b” Part 2 of Article 158 of the Criminal Code of the RF (“home-invasion robbery»). On 13 March, the court selected a measure of restraint for them in the form of detention. Now both of them are in the Temporary Detention Facility.
On 19 March, Nikolay Bondarenko applied to human rights defenders for legal assistance. He informed that on 10 March he was at his farm, when early in the morning, an acquaintance of his, Andrey Popov, came to him and offered to buy some cows. At this moment, several vehicles entered the territory of the farm, out of which people in camouflage uniform came, they were masked and armed with machine-guns and shouted “Face down! On the ground!”
“When I lay on the ground, there were about five people in camouflage uniform near me. They demanded that I lay and did not move. They also demanded that I told them how many cows and heating boilers I stole. I told them that I did not steal cows, and after that they started to hit me. In total I received ten blows all over my body. The battery stopped when someone mentioned that I was the owner of the farm”, – Bondarenko recalls.
After that the police officers took him to the Department of the Interior for the Kalininsky District. There, according to Nikolay, law-enforcement officers brought him inside one of the rooms and started to demand that he confessed of theft of cows and heating boilers. After he refused, two men in camouflage uniform and masks started to hit him with fists, knees and legs all over his body.
“At about five in the evening I agreed to provide confessions, because I felt sharp pain in the ribs area. My heart started aching, as well, and I felt the disturbances of my heart rhythm, and I was worried that the hits in the heat area that I received in large numbers, may lead to my death”, – Bondarenko described.
After that Nikolay was released from the police department.
Later on, based on the results of the medical forensic examination, Nikolay Bondarenko was diagnosed with the following: “Physical damage in the form of extravasations in the area of the rib cage, upper left and lower left limbs, bruises in the area of the right lower limb”, as well as with “closed fracture of the 8th, 9th, 10th ribs on the left without dislocation of bone fragments, contusion of the knee joint”.
In the course of the public investigation, lawyers with the Committee Against Torture obtained video records of apprehension of Andrey Popov, Sergey Duz’ and Nikolay Bondarenko, that captured the unjustified brutality of law-enforcement officers.
On 19 March, human rights defenders applied to the Investigative Committee on behalf of Andrey Popov and Nikolay Bondarenko with a crime report.
On 18 April, Sergey Duz’ also applied to the Committee Against Torture for legal assistance. He informed that during apprehension the officers were hitting his face, ribs, feet, and after he was taken to the police department, they continued to beat him up demanding that he confessed of the cows’ theft.
On 28 April, Senior Investigator of the First Section for Major Cases with the Investigative Department of the Investigative Committee of the RF for the Krasnodar Territory Dmitry Kalinchikov issued a ruling on opening a criminal case under item “a” Part 3 of Article 286 of the Criminal Code of the RF (“abuse of office using violence”) with regard to Deputy Head of Police (Operations) of the Department of the Interior for the Primorsky-Akhtarsky District Evgeny Volkov, as well as with regard to unidentified persons under items “a”, “b” of Part 3, Article 286 of the Criminal Code of the RF (“abuse of office using violence and weapons”).
Today, lawyers with the Committee Against Torture received a copy of this ruling.
“We are satisfied with the fact that the criminal case based on this outrageous event has been at last opened, – lawyer with the Committee Against Torture Ilya Platonov comments. – However, so far the investigator opened the criminal case only on the episode of Andrey Popov battery which was registered on the video. That is why we will continue to insist that the criminal cases on applications submitted by Nikolay Bondarenko and Sergey Duz’ are opened, as well – according to them, they were beaten up both during apprehension and at the police department, when being forced to confess. I’d like to remind to you that Bondarenko left the police department with three broken ribs, and Duz’ was subsequently diagnosed with bodily injuries, as well”.