On 13 October, the European Court passed a ruling in the case of the CAT applicant Vladimir Arkhipov. The court acknowledged a violation of Article 3 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms («No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment») in the material and procedural aspects and awarded a compensation for moral damage in the amount of 26 thousand euro.
Vladimir Arkhipov applied to the Orenburg branch of the CAT in October 2011 and told human rights defenders that during the night he was stopped by the Road Patrol Service who checked him for alcoholic intoxication. Without letting him see the results, they told him that he was drunk. Then, according to Arkhipov, the police officers offered him to call his relatives who could «sort this all out». Vladimir replied that he was sober and ready to undergo a medical examination.
«Apparently, the police officers were not satisfied with my answer, and they started a gross-out. One of them took a swing and hit my right temple with his fist», — Vladimir described.
After that, according to Vladimir, he got in the patrol car and took the test once again, in the presence of attesting witnesses. After that he was released from the case. Then, Arkhipov got into his car and locked from the inside. The police officers demanded that he opened the car and got out, but he refused, because he was afraid they would continue to beat him up.
«While I was trying to close the window, one of the police officers opened a car trunk and, having broken the passenger seats, entered in the car’s passenger compartment. He started to choke me, when he was behind me. I tried to break myself free, and at that time, another police officer opened the door from my side and started to hit me with electric shocker. I passed out several times».
According to the man, at the same time other Road Patrol Service officers were hitting his head and body. The last hit, that made him lose consciousness, was at his nose. When Vladimir regained consciousness, he was sitting in his car. His nose was smashed, his T-shirt and jeans were smeared with blood. Vladimir asked the police officers to call an ambulance since he was suffering from blood incoagulability and could die of blood loss. According to Arkhipov, the police officers threw his telephone at him, and he immediately called an ambulance which picked him up and brought to hospital.
The medical examination that Arkhipov passed the next day, showed that the man had a brain concussion, contusion of the soft tissues of the head and face, as well as burns and electric marks on his body.
The investigators repeatedly issued dismissals of the claims to open a criminal case — 23, in total. In addition, the CAT lawyers found out that the investigators lost Arkhipov’s medical records, which were important for expert examination to establish the degree of the damage.
Due to the fact that no effective investigation was conducted at the domestic level, lawyers with the CAT applied to the European Court of Human Rights in 2013. The application was communicated in 2018. On the same year, the Orenburg court collected a fine from the Investigative Committee for 7 years of red tape in the Arkhipov’s case.
The comment by head of the Orenburg branch of the CAT Albina Mudarisova:
«Unfortunately, after the expulsion of Russia from the Council of Europe, the Russian authorities refused to execute the ECHR rulings, that is why the ruling in favour of Vladimir Arkhipov is more of a moral satisfaction, that the violation of his rights was acknowledged at the international level. However, I would like to point out that this ruling does not have a period of limitations, which means that if the situation changes and Russia returns under the ECHR jurisdiction, the execution of previously taken but non-executed rulings will be one of the conditions for such return»