Next week the verdict for a policeman charged with grave ill-treatment will be pronounced in Nizhny Novgorod


27 September 2011

Yesterday the Moskovsky district court of Nizhny Novgorod conducted the final hearing under the criminal case against police captain Sergey Kuzmenkov accused of abuse of office – beating Nizhny Novgorod resident Pavel Guryanov in the Moskovsky District Police Department on 1 July 2010. During the debates the prosecution insisted that the defendant should be found guilty of the charge against him and sentenced to 5 years of imprisonment without suspension of execution. You may remember that Kuzmenkov was accused of abuse of office.

The official investigation and public investigation conducted by the CAT have established that on July 1, 2010 Guryanov was detained by the police at home. He was taken to the 4th police department of the Nizhny Novgorod Directorate of the Interior and cruelly beaten there. Guryanov spent three days in hospital and was released with the following diagnosis: posttraumatic compressive-ischemic polyneuropathy of shinbone nerves of both lower extremities. Despite all doctors’ efforts, the victim’s left leg will never regain its functionality.    

   After receiving Guryanov’s application the ICAT lawyers questioned witnesses, filed an application to the Russian Investigation Committee.  On July 6, 2010 Guryanov underwent a forensic medical examination during which the signs of beating, tying up with a rope, using handcuffs and the stool were documented. In this case, the CAT did its best to ensure prompt instigation of criminal proceedings. Surprisingly, the official investigation dealt with the allegations effectively which is, unfortunately, a rare case in ICAT practice. Usually, the authorities perform a superficial check of the crime report and issue numerous refusals to instigate criminal proceedings that ICAT lawyers appeal against, which is a rather time-consuming process.

ICAT lawyers represented Guryanov’s interests at the pre-trial investigation stage and took part in judicial proceedings. The ICAT supports the state prosecution and also finds it necessary to subject Kuzmenkov to a punishment involving isolation from the society. It must be mentioned that such position is fully consistent with ECtHR case law requiring real imprisonment for such grave human rights violations as torture.

Judge of the Moskovsky district court Stanislav Orekhov is expected to pronounce the verdict at 14.00 on September 28, 2011.

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