The Committee Against Torture is engaged into another check on the allegations of torture in a Nizhny Novgorod colony


23 June 2010

On 17 June 2010 the Interregional Committee Against Torture received an application from Ms. Barinova claiming that her son Evgeny Smolev contained in penal colony  IK-20 under the Federal Penitentiary Service Directorate for Nizhny Novgorod region had been abused by the colony staff.

   The ICAT lawyers sent the information submitted by the applicant to the Public Monitoring Commission supervising human rights observance  in detention facilities of Nizhny Novgorod region (hereinafter – PMC). On 18 June 2010 PMC members arrived at IK-20 to conduct a check. During the check they questioned Mr. Smolev who claimed that on June 16 he had been beaten up by workers of the penal colony, in particular, by head of the Security Department, major Baryshev. The reason for the battery was that Smolev had not gone for breakfast because he had had a backache due to a spine injury. After the beat up he was locked up in an isolated cell.

Evgeny’s cellmates and witnesses pointed out that after the “educational work” Evgeny could hardly stand on his feet, he had had bruises and abrasions on the face and trunk. Smolev said that he had been battered by the duty shift. He complained that he was not feeling well, was dizzy and nauseous.  Thanks to numerous and persistent requests of his cellmates, the doctor was summoned who examined Smolev and prescribed him bed rest, but did not document the injuries. In the evening on June 16 he felt worse, and an ambulance was called in. The duty doctor examined the applicant. At present the applicant feels bad, the doctor sees him daily.

Currently, the ICAT lawyers have grounds to believe that the actions of the colony staff (including doctors) violated prisoner Smolev’s rights.

It must be noted that this is not the first time that prisoners have complained to the Committee Against Torture and PMC about cruel treatment and abuse by the personnel of colony IK-20, and major Baryshev is mentioned in nearly all applications.


Of the Interregional Committee against Torture

Comment by Alexander Listkov, head of the Public Monitoring Commission supervising human rights observance  in detention facilities of Nizhny Novgorod region:

“It is premature to state that there are massive human rights violations in IK-20. Right now we are investigating into the applications of inmates and their relatives. However, we are rather concerned by the fact that within a very short period of time this colony has taken the first position as for the number of applications the PMC receives. We have got claims related to beat-ups, hunger-strikes and forcible suicide.    We thoroughly check all the complaints and submit the results of our investigations to the law enforcement authorities which are to provide an official response to the incidents”.

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