Head of the Criminal Investigation Section of the Department of Interior for the Solnechnogorsky District Evgeny Lyulkin offered his apologies to Ilkhom Alikhonov, whose brother died because of the police battery. Mr Alikhonov received apologies only a year and a half after the indictment of the police officers took effect and after numerous complaints and applications of lawyers with the Committee Against Torture.
As we have previously reported, on 26 September 2014, a Moscow-area resident Ilkhom Alikhonov applied to the Committee Against Torture for legal support. He told the human rights defenders that in the evening of 17 September when he returned home his brother Farrukh Urozov was asleep. In ten minutes’ time, several Patrol-and-Guard Service officers entered the house together with the brothers’ neighbor.
According to Ilkhom, having applied physical violence, the police officers woke up his brother, handcuffed him and took him to the police department. As Ilkhom learned later, Farrukh was detained upon suspicion of using violence against six-year-old daughter of their neighbor.
Ilkhom explained that after a while police officers came up to his house again and this time they took him together with his mate Firdavs Sattorov to the same police department. There Alikhonov heard the loud cries of his brother, who was in one of the rooms. For some time, he even managed to see Farrukh through a cracked door: the brother was sitting on the floor with hands tied, a lot of bruises and scratches were clearly seen on his face, there was blood on the floor.
Early in the morning of 18 September, Ilkhom and Firdavs were released from the police department. Several hours later they learned that Farrukh Urozov died.
According to the forensic medical examination Urozov’s body and limbs were hit over seventy-five times. In the course of the battery twelve ribs were broken. Mr Urozov died of multiple traumas and strangulation.
Criminal case with regard to the fact of Urozov’s death was immediately initiated; one of the police officers was detained and arrested. In the course of investigation, the involvement of two other Criminal Investigations Department officers in Urozov’s death was established: later on they were also arrested and put into the pre-trial detention facility.
On 15 June 2016 judge of the Solnechnogorskiy City Court of the Moscow region Stanislav Chepik brought in the verdict of guilty for three defendants. They were declared guilty of committing the crimes under part 4 Article 111 of the Criminal Code of Russia («inflicting grave bodily harm leading to the death by negligence») and items «а, b, c» of part 3 Article 286 of the Criminal Code of Russia («abuse of office using violence, weapons or special equipment, which inflicted grave consequences»). Deikun and Chernyshev are sentenced to seven years and four months of prison term, Gordeyev – to seven years and six months of prison term. The court made a ruling that they would serve their sentence in a maximum security penal colony.
On 27 October 2016, the Moscow regional court upheld the verdict of the court of first instance and the verdict came into legal force.
Upon the verdict entered into legal force, the lawyers with the Committee for the Prevention of Torture applied to Head of the Chief Directorate of the Ministry of the Interior of the Russian Federation for the Moscow region Victor Paukov requesting to bring apologies to the brother of the deceased – Ilkhom Alikhonov – who is officially declared a victim of unlawful actions of the police officers.
In the end of December 2016, human rights defenders received an answer from head of Department of Moral Affairs of the Chief Directorate of Interior of the Russian Federation for the Moscow region, Colonel Sergey Mizonov, which stated: «Apologies of the law enforcement agencies executives to the relatives of the citizens, whose rights and freedoms were violated, are not provided by the Procedure».
“We repeatedly complained to the Prosecutor’s Office of the Moscow region against the refusal of the police officers to apologize to Ilkhom Alikhonov, however, the supervisory authority officers for some reason forwarded our complaints to the Ministry of the Interior. Only after several complaints and applications to the Ministry of the Interior of the Russian Federation we became aware that the Chief Directorate of the Ministry of the Interior of the Russian Federation received the instruction to offer the apologies, in the end, – lawyer with the Committee Against Torture Dmitry Piskunov comments. – We managed to have a look at the letter of apology itself only in four months after it was sent. All this eighteen months’ saga with asking for an apology which is required by law, and receiving a formal note instead, in my opinion, tellingly demonstrates that the police authority does not consider itself responsible for the death of the apprehended person”.
As we have previously reported, in January 2017, lawyers with the Committee for the Prevention of Torture submitted a lawsuit to the Zamoskvoretsky District Court of Moscow for compensation of moral damage in the amount of three million rubles to the brother of the deceased, inflicted by the police officers’ crime. On 18 May of last year judge Nelly Rubtsova partially satisfied the claims under the lawsuit, having decided to collect two hundred thousand rubles from the Ministry of the Interior of Russia for the benefit of Ilkhom Alikhonov. The court of appeal upheld this ruling.