Today, on 31 May 2018, judge of the Shakhunsky District Court of the Nizhny Novgorod region Valentina Smelova passed a judgment to collect three hundred and fifty thousand from the Ministry of the Interior of Russia for the benefit of Denis Kramchaninov, who was tortured in 2010 by the police officer when forced to confess.
As we have previously reported, Denis Kramchaninov applied to the Committee Against Torture in July 2010. He told the human rights defenders that he was severely beaten by a local police officer who was forcing the young man to sign a false self-accusation of committing a theft.
As Kramchaninov reported in his explanation, in the evening of 15 July 2010 he was brought from his home to the Shakhunsky Police Department. Inside the office premises the police officer demanded that the guy confessed of theft, after that he hit him several times with his fists against the head, pressed his fingers with pliers, and, having put the gas mask on the young man, made him do knee bends. The battery and torture lasted about two hours, after that Denis yielded and agreed to sign a full confession, which was dictated to him by the police officer. When in the evening of the same day the young man applied to the Shakhunskaya District hospital doctors diagnosed him with a cerebral concussion and registered some hematomas on his body.
The criminal case on theft initiated against Denis was dismissed in a short time due to failure to prove the young man’s guilt.
For almost seven years human rights defenders were insisting on opening the criminal case based on Denis torture report: during this time ten refusals to initiate criminal proceedings were issued, subsequently they were declared illegal and quashed. In August 2016, lawyers with the Committee Against Torture applied to the European Court of Human Rights with a complaint in the interests of Denis Kramchaninov.
On 29 May 2017, the criminal case was opened with regard to former investigative officer of the Department of the Interior for the Shakhunsky District Andrey Tumanov, who is accused of committing a crime under item “a” part 3 Article 286 of the Criminal Code of the RF (“abuse of office with the use of violence”).
The preliminary investigation of the criminal case took about two months and after the assertion of the indictment by the Prosecutor it was sent to court for evaluation on its merits.
On 15 December 2017, in the course of the court hearing State Prosecutor Sergey Lugin requested a punishment for the defendant in the form of six years’ prison term in a standard security penal colony. The victim stated that he would be satisfied with any indictment. In the course of the court investigation the defendant did not acknowledged his guilt, refused to provide evidence, having used the constitutional right not to testify against himself.
On 13 February of this year, judge of the Shakhunsky District Court of the Nizhny Novgorod region Valentina Smelova passed a judgment of conviction with regard to former investigative officer of the Department of the Interior for the Shakhunsky District Andrey Tumanov, who was declared guilty of committing a crime under item “a” part 3 Article 286 of the Criminal Code of the RF (“abuse of office with the use of violence”) and sentenced to four years’ conditional term.
After the verdict took its legal effect, lawyers with the Committee Against Torture applied to court with a lawsuit to the Ministry of the Interior of Russia seeking a compensation of moral damage inflicted to Denis Kramchaninov by illegal activities of the convicted law-enforcement officer.
Today judge Valentina Smelkova partially satisfied the demands under the lawsuit, having delivered a judgment to collect three hundred fifty thousand roubles from the Ministry of the Interior of Russia for the benefit of Denis Kramchaninov out of the requested seven hundred thousand.
“Despite the fact that the court reduced the amount of compensation for moral damage in half, Denis is satisfied with the awarded sum and does not intend to appeal against the court ruling”, – lawyer with the Committee Against Torture Pavel Osadchiy, representing his interests, comments.