The court held that the video records, illegally seized by the investigator, are returned back in the materials of the check


03 June 2016

Judge of Yoshkar-Ola City Court Fedor Artyushov declared the actions of investigator of the Investigative Department for Yoshkar-Ola of the Investigative Committee of the RF for the Mary El Republic Tatyana Dolgopolova, who seized the records of the video surveillance cameras from the material of the check based on the crime report by Vusal Askerov from Yoshkar-Ola, with which he applied to the investigative body, to be illegal. As we have previously reported, Mr Askerov complained against the police officer, who according to Vusal, broke his nose. After the court ruling enters into legal force Vusal and his representatives, human rights defenders with the Committee for Prevention of Torture, will at last familiarize with the data from the surveillance cameras, which may throw light on this incident involving police officers, which took place on the night from 19 to 20 February of this year.

The story goes like this. As Vusal told the human rights defenders, on the night from 19 to 20 February he dropped in a cafe-grill bar with some friends of his to buy cigarettes. However, this routine action ended in a conflict. «When we entered the shop a cashier refused to serve us without explaining the reasons. After several attempts to attract her attention I broke a glass fish from the shop-window», – Vusal described the incident.

After that, according to Askerov, the shop assistant called for private enterprise security officers who came to scene of event and told the group of young men to wait till the police arrive.

«When the police officers arrived and entered the shop they immediately started to behave very rudely, none of them introduced themselves or showed their police IDs. One of the officers came up to me and asked: «Is it you who is the most arrogant here?», after that he pulled my arm behind my back and brought me out from the shop», – Askerov describes what was going on. Then, according to Vusal, the police officer brought him out in the street, faceplanted and handcuffed him, after that kicked him in the face so violently that Vusal lost consciousness for some time.

On the same day, 20 February, Vusal submitted a crime report to the investigative department for Yoshkar-Ola city of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation for the Republic of Mary El, as well as to the human rights defenders of the Committee for Prevention of Torture for legal assistance.

As a result of the conducted check investigator of the Investigative Committee Ms Dolgopolova came to the conclusion that there was no element of crime in the actions of the police officers, and the material for this fact should be severed based on elements of crime under 115 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation («intended infliction of moderate harm to health»).

On 21 March 2016 Ms Dolgopolova issued a refusal to initiate criminal proceedings. After familiarizing with the materials of the pre-investigative check lawyers of the Committee for Prevention of Torture appealed against this investigator’s order in court, considering that the check of the crime report was performed inefficiently, and all the investigator’s conclusions are based on the police officers’ evidence. Later, in court the Investigative Committee representatives presented the freshly signed ruling which quashed the refusal and assigned an additional check.

«In the course of familiarization with the materials of the check it turned out that the hard drive with video surveillance cameras records was missing (the cameras were installed inside and outside the grill cafe where the incident took place. It emerged that investigator Tatyana Dolgopolova simply seized the disk and attached it to another criminal case. The investigator failed to explain why a copy was not taken», – lawyer of the Committee for Prevention of Torture Danil Chendemerov comments.

With regard to this human rights defenders also applied to court, and again with a complaint against the actions of investigator Dolgopolova: the victim’s representatives asked to declare seizing of the video records from the materials of the check to be illegal, since it violated the constitutional right of Vusal Askerov to familiarize with the documents and materials, which are directly involved in his rights and freedoms.

The court satisfied the complaint of the Committee for Prevention of Torture lawyers and compelled the investigator to attach the authenticated copy of the disk with video surveillance cameras records. After the court ruling enters into legal force Vusal and his representatives will familiarize with these video records.

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