Two policemen from Nizhny Novgorod were put under home arrest, relatives of one of them appealed to the Committee against torture


24 January 2013

The criminal case against the officers of PD №1 MIA RF in Nizhny Novgorod (Avtozavodsky district) suspected of official crime gathers pace. Last night the Soviet regional court ruled that Sergey Alimov, the chief officer of this police department, and Ivan Vechkanov, the deputy chief, should be put under home arrest till 23 of February, 2013.

(The photo shows Aleksey Matasov, the lawyer of the Committee against torture, colleagues and relatives of the accused)

On January 21, 2013 the police officers were arrested by special prosecutors of the Investigative Department of IC RF of Nizhegorodskaya region.  That very day they were accused: Alimov – of committing a crime provided for by paragraph «а» of part 3 of article 286 CC RF, and Vechkanov – of committing a crime provided for by paragraphs «а, b» of part 3 of article 286 CC RF.

It is recalled that on January 18, 2013 Vladimir Samsonov, the deputy chief officer of the  PD, who on 16 of January, 2013 had been accused of committing a crime provided for by paragraph «а» of part 3 of article 286 CC RF, had been arrested.

According to the investigation “on the 3rd of March 2012 six police officers  used physical force illegally on two citizens in order to make them confess in allegedly committed crimes having to do with carjacking”, as published at the investigative department  of the Investigative Committee RF in Nizhegorodskaya region Web site.

The events preceding this criminal case are the following. In April 2012 Nizami Gasanov and Elshan Zamanov appealed for help to Nizhegorodsky department of the Committee against torture – they claimed to be tortured by policemen. According to the applicants, Sergey Alimov and Ivan Vechkanov took active part in the tortures.

Aleksey Matasov, the lawyer of the Committee against torture, who represents victims’ interests, noted: “In my opinion this court decision was influenced by several factors. The judge took into account that the accused had minor children and elderly relatives to look after.  Apparently the letters in support of the policemen from Victor Tsiganov, the deputy chief officer of MDIA of Nizhegorodskaya region, and his colleagues had also played a certain part. Aleksandr Tinayev, the chief officer of PD № 1, also called on them to give support.

Yuri Elantsev, the deputy head of the department investigating cases of particular importance of the Investigative Department IC RF of Nizhegorodskaya region, noted he was under great pressure from the top police management of the region and it was extremely hard to carry on investigation in that conditions. He also mentioned, he was concerned about life and health of the victims as they had constantly received threats from police officers”.

It should be noted that on January 22, 2013 the relatives of one of the policemen staying under home arrest appealed to the Committee against torture. They complained of moral pressure from the investigator who conducted the criminal case.

The application will also be verified by human rights defenders.

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