The State Prosecutor requested to sentence former police officers from Nizhny Novgorod charged with torture to 11 years of prison term in total


26 May 2016

The Sormovsky District Court of Nizhny Novgorod continue to examine a criminal case of two former police officers of Police Department No.8 of the Sormovsky District.  They are charged with crime under items «а», «b» part 3 Article 286 of the Criminal Code of the RF («Abuse of office using violence, weapons or special equipment»). In the course of the last court session State Prosecutor Aleksey Grinevetsky requested that the defendants are declared guilty and sentenced to four and seven years of prison term, accordingly.  

(Photo: Anton Golovko)

On 9 September 2015 Anton Golovko from the Sormovsky District of Nizhny Novgorod applied to the Committee for Prevention of Torture for legal assistance. According to him, on 23 March 2012 he was tortured by the police officers of Police Department No.8 in order to make him confess of a theft from a car: police officers beat him up, put a gas mask on his face, choked him and hang him up. Golovko was forced to sign a full confession which by that time had already been written for him by one of the police officers, however, no criminal case was opened with regard to Anton.
Instead the investigative authorities opened a criminal case based on the fact of torture. It should be pointed out that the officers of the Directorate of Internal Security of the Main Directorate of the Ministry of the Interior of Russia for the Nizhny Novgorod region seized a number of material objects from the office of the suspected police officers, including gas masks, nunchucks, ropes.

On the same year of 2012 the criminal case was sent to the district court. The defendants and their defense team tried to topple the case by different means – once the judge had to return the case for the additional investigation. Then Anton Golovko applied to human rights defenders for legal assistance, and they started to represent his interests in court.

«Apart from other things, we organized expert examination of some of the evidence in order to strengthen our position in court. Later on the results of these studies were attached to the materials of the case, – lawyer of the Committee for Prevention of Torture Albert Kuznetsov, representing the interests of Anton Golovko in court. – During the examination of the criminal case the defense team of the defendants systematically submitted same-type motions: insisted on calling back some witnesses to court, brought some witnesses on its own, who could not explain anything about the matter.  We consider these facts as abuse of the procedural rights and sabotaging the proceedings».

In the course of the last court session State Prosecutor Aleksey Grinevetskiy considered the guilt of the defendants to be proven and asked the court to sentence two former police officers to four and seven years of prison term, accordingly.  According to Kuznetsov, one of the defendants felt sick and he left the court building with the help of the medical ambulance team and did not take part in the debate.  

Next court session, at which the defendants’ lawyers are going to speak, is scheduled for 27 May at 10 a.m., after which the defendants will pronounce the final statements.  

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