Photo: convicted police officers Sermavbrin and Shapovalov.
Today we have learnt that the judgment against two former officers of the Balakhna Department of Internal Affairs charged with a number of torture-related offenses has entered into force. According to the investigation authorities, they systematically applied unlawful investigation methods to detainees. Lawyer of the Committee against Torture Irina Migachyova represented one of the victims – Alexander Marychev. All in all there were 5 victims under that case.
On 21 November 2008 the defendants were found guilty – Andrey Sermavbrin was sentenced to 3 yeas of imprisonment on conditional discharge under p.3 cl. “a”, art. 286, Konstantin Shapovalov was sentenced to 4 years of imprisonment in a standard security colony under p.3 cl. “a”, “b” art. 286 of the RF Criminal Code. It should be mentioned that though the defendants pled innocent, they did not appeal against the verdict to the cassation instance.
From now on the victims have all grounds to lodge a suit claiming compensation of moral damage.
The Committee against Torture hopes that yet another conviction of state representatives guilty of tortures will be a lesson for other law enforcement agents and will help to stop the wave of violence in the police.