The rebellion that never happened


09 November 2009

17 people have been beaten up in the Vyksa temporary detention facility

   Several Vyksa citizens have applied to the Committee against Torture claiming that 17 detainees were beaten up in Vyksa.

Relatives of people kept in the Vyksa temporary detention facility (Nizhny Novgorod region) have reported that several detainees were cruelly battered on 11 October 2009.

The preliminary check conducted by the Committee against Torture has shown that 17 people (including one minor) awaiting trial in the TDF were battered for unclear reasons, allegedly, because one of them had complained of tortures at the pre-trial stage. According to the applicants, the beat up was organized by the TDF staff together with local criminal investigators whom the detainees had accused of tortures in court the day before.

From 12 till 15 October 2009 most of the detainees were transferred to remand prison 3 (the village of Annenkovsky Karier, Vad district, Nizhny Novgorod region). The doctors there showed fidelity to their principles, documented the detainees’ injuries and provided them medical help.

The Vyksa Interdistrict Investigation Department carried out a check once the detainees’ injuries were revealed. The check resulted in a refusal to open criminal proceedings.

The police staff questioned described the situation as a rebellion. According to them, the detainees broke the walls with steel rods and threatened the police. However the TDF staff did not document those facts properly.  

Thus, the TDF deputy head did not notify his heads about the emergency situation which alerted all TDF staff because “he was too busy”.  It seems that rebellions are a common thing in Vyksa, therefore no one is surprised and there are more important things to do.

No protocols of personal search were prepared either, although it should be done in such a situation according to internal regulations.  Apparently, the TDF staff was too busy again. The investigator stated that since there were no protocols, he could not determine whether the use of force had been lawful. Thus, the police should not even bother to justify their actions, the investigator is eager to de this for them. The investigator states in his act that the detainees threatened the police with violence and cursed at them using obscene language. Basically, the Criminal Code includes such crimes as threat of violence and insult of an officer, but the humane investigator forgives the detainees and does not qualify their actions in any way.

The investigator also reports about some wondrous fractures in the walls made by the rebels and about chilling metal rods kept in the police garage. However, the investigator inspected neither the fractures, nor the rods and took the word of the police for it.

Besides, two detainees claimed that they had been battered not only on 11 October, but also on 5 October, but the investigator ignored those allegations.

As a result, the police motivate the battery of 17 people by a rebellion, but they forget to report about it to the authorities.

In the nearest future we are going to appeal against the above mentioned refusal to open a criminal case. We hope that the additional check will be conducted more thoroughly and those responsible will be held accountable.

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