Three Bashkir drug control policemen got off with suspended sentences for torture

Событие | Пресс центр

23 April 2013

On 22 April 2013 Oktyabrskiy City Court of the Republic of Bashkotrostan found three Federal Drug Control Service Directorate officers guilty of criminal offenses under article 286 (3) of the Criminal Code of RF, and delivered suspended sentences. It is notable, that since 2010 and till now they have been working in the police.

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Earlier, on 4 August 2010, citizens of Oktyabrskiy city, police captain Artur Sadretdinov, Sergey Andreev and Oleg Bayrashev applied to the Committee Against Torture complaining that they had been battered severely by staff members of Bashkortostan Directorate of Federal Drug Control Service (UFSKN RB).

The Committee Against Torture lawyers conducted a public investigation which established the fact of torture. The formal investigation and court were also satisfied that on 21 June 2010 Sadretdinov, Bayrashev and Andreev were detained by drug control officers and delivered to Oktyabrskiy department of UFSKN where the officers were beating the three men for several hours in order to make  them claim responsible for drug trafficking.

The result of this “communication” with the drug control policemen was that the victims were diagnosed with injuries of different severity levels. Sadretdinov and Andreev had to spend several weeks in hospital.

On 1 September 2010 criminal proceedings based on the fact of violence against Sadretdinov were initiated. Yet, the investigators were not willing to grant Andreev and Bayrashev the status of victims, and criminal proceedings based on the fact of violence against them were initiated only after human rights defenders had repeatedly appealed unlawful decisions to refuse to initiate criminal proceedings. In February 2012 the investigation was completed and the proceedings were referred to court.

Yesterday Oktyabrskiy District Court of the Republic of Bashkortostan found the three UFSKN RB staff members guilty of criminal offenses under article 286 (3) of the Criminal Code of RF. Evgeniy Filipov was sentenced to four years of probation with a six-year suspended sentence; Aleksandr Bukarev received three years of probation with a three-year suspended sentence; Sergey Khanzhin was sentenced to three years of probation with a four-year suspended sentence. The convicts are also prohibited from being employed in law enforcement agencies within three years from now.

A lawyer of the Boshkortostan regional branch of INGO “The Committee against Torture” Oleg Golovko commented on the judgment: “I consider the sentence too lenient, but the victims are content with the suspended sentences for their tortures, for they must be exhausted by the long and tiresome three-year long investigation and trial. This is their right, that is why we are not going to appeal the sentence. However, we will continue work on this case and, after the sentence enters into force, we will prepare claims for compensation for moral damage. We also intend to demand an apology from the Federal Drug Control Service Directorate superiors for their staff members’ actions”.