The criminal case on tortures in the police department is returned for additional investigation


31 October 2016

Deputy Prosecutor of the Nizhny Novgorod region Konstantin Zhilyakov overturned as illegal the resolution made by investigator Anna Molodtsova on dismissal of the criminal case based on the fact of tortures of Oleg Krayushkin from Pavlovo city by the policemen. We should point out that when making a decision on the policemen’s noninvolvement in the committing the crime, the investigator based on the evidence given by the suspects themselves, as well as by some “classified witness”.

As it follows from the resolution on the termination of the criminal case, the main version of the official investigation was that Oleg Krayushkin was not injured by the policemen but did it himself as a result of falling from the logging truck. This is proved by the evidence given by the suspected policemen and also some “Sidorov P.I.” (the true name of the person is kept classified by the investigative authorities). The classified witness said that in autumn 2012 he was drinking alcohol drinks in the company of Krayushkin and the other suspect on the case of the sawmill theft. This man is indicated in the resolution as “I.Gogolev”. At that moment, according to “Sidorov P.I.”, Oleg Krayushkin and Gogolev boasted to him of stealing a sawmill the other day. And, allegedly, Oleg added that he was not afraid of the criminal responsibility as on the day of the arrest he had bruises and he was going to file claims against the policemen himself stating that they caused his bodily injures.

The human rights defenders decided to check the truth of the evidence provided by the secret witness: for that purpose on 7 October 2016 they found Mr Gogolev and questioned him.

Alexander Gogolev turned out to be an unemployed citizen of Selitba village in the Sosnovsky region. In the course of the questioning Alexander found it difficult to explain why he was called “I. Gogolev” in the resolution and said that he had no relatives with such a name. However, he was the very person involved as a suspect in the case of the sawmill theft in 2012 and later he was convicted and sentenced to a conditional prison term. Due to this fact there is no doubt that it was Alexander who was implied in the evidence given by “the classified witness” as a friend of Krayushkin drinking alcohol with him in 2012.

Oleg Krayushkin himself arrived to see Alexander Gogolev to check this information. In the course of the conversation the victim and Alexander Gogolev said that they saw each other for the first time and got to know each other only on this very day, on 7 October 2016. Alexander Gogolev stated that he had never met Oleg Krayushkin before and to say that they were having a drink together in 2012 was out of the question.

So, the human rights defenders found a contradiction in the case of Krayushkin which was not eliminated by investigator Anna Molodtsova in the course of the investigation.

– For some unknown reason the investigator neither established not interrogated Mr Gogolev in order to check the truth of the evidence given by some “classified witness” who appeared in the case upon the petition of one of the suspected policemen, – lawyer of the Committee for the Prevention of Torture Vladimir Smirnov, representing the interests of Oleg Krayushkin, points out. – These and some other flaws of the investigator’s work became the ground for our complaint which we filed to the Prosecutors’ Office of Nizhny Novgorod region on 14 October this year. The same day the resolution of the investigator was declared illegal, and the case was returned for further investigation.

As we have previously reported, in September 2012 businessman from Pavlovo city Oleg Krayushkin applied to the INGO «Committee Against Torture» for legal assistance. According to Mr Krayushkin, on 11 September, following numerous demands to confess of stealing a sawmill, the policemen in one of the rooms of the Pavlovsky police department started to torture him. Krayushkin was forced to take off his boots and kneel, and then they started hitting him with a truncheon on his feet, occasionally hitting him with their palms in the ears, face, and groin area. The execution lasted for three hours, but Oleg did not give in and did not fulfill the demands of the policemen. After that he was taken to a temporary detention facility of the Sosnovskoye district police department, and later on he was released. A criminal case was initiated against the entrepreneur, however, it collapsed soon, and real culprits were brought to justice.

Despite the evidence of the elements of crime the investigator failed to open the criminal case for a year, having issued eight unlawful refusals to initiate criminal proceedings.

Then the criminal case was suspended eight times.

In July of this year after numerous complaints made by the human rights defenders, including the application to Alexander Bastrykin, the Chairperson of the Investigation Committee of the Russian Federation, there was some progress in the case. The case was transferred from the regional branch to the First Department for Major Cases in Nizhny Novgorod. At first investigator Anna Molodtsova performed some investigating activities that the colleagues from Pavlov city had not had time to do for some unknown reasons. It was in summer 2016, almost four years after the events, when the necessary face-to-face confrontations were conducted. But on 28 September 2016 the case was dismissed. As it follows from the resolution of the regional Prosecutors’ Office, it was dismissed illegally.

“When after several years the case of Krayushkin was transferred from Pavlov to Nizhny Novgorod, to the department for major cases, we took it this news with cautious optimism. Investigator of major crimes Anna Molodtsova was characterized as an experienced worker in the investigation administration who could cope with all the amount of the necessary work required by this case. Unfortunately, we have to state that “experienced investigator Molodtsova” did not conduct an efficient investigation, and this is not just our conclusion but also the opinion of the regional Prosecutor’s Office. Now the investigation of this criminal case has been reopened, and we are intending to assist the official investigation. For that reason we have already filed a request to the investigator asking to include the evidence that we received including the explanations of Alexander Gogolev”, – lawyer of the Committee for the Prevention of Torture Vladimir Smirnov comments.

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