New Charges against Mikhail Marynich
Well-known Belarusian politician and public figure Mikhail Marynich was charged with another two criminal offences: theft or damage of documents, stamps, seals (Art 377 part 2) and larceny committed with abuse of power, by an organized group or at an especially high rate (Art 210 part 4), BelaPAN was told by Marynich’s defender Vera Stramkowskaya.
In particular, her client was charged with stealing documents which allegedly are a State secret, and taking office equipment, which had been handed over for free temporary use to Business Initiative NGO headed by him.
Let us remind you that earlier Marynich was charged under Art 295 part 2 of the Criminal Code (illegal actions with firearms, ammunition and explosives).
According to Vera Stramkowskaya, two new charges came as a bolt from the blue for her client. She says, Mikhail Marynich wrote a protest statement on the indictment paper and refused to testify. He believes the actions of the law-enforcing bodies are politically-motivated and are aimed at preventing him from running in the presidential election-2006. Marynich will be ineligible to run even if he receives a conditional sentence.
His lawyer believes all charges against Marynich “are baseless and groundless”. In particular, she says, the documents in question have been declassified since long ago, while the office equipment belongs to the United States Embassy that has never filed any claims on the matter. Vera Stramkowskaya points out that the US Embassy will be qualified as a victim in this case.
Marynich’s detention is scheduled to expire on September 26. The lawyer says most likely it will be extended. The charge under Art 210 part 4 of the Criminal Code is considered a grave crime and carries a prison sentence of 7 to 15 years and seizure of property.
Let us remind you that former Minister of Foreign Economic Relations, MP of the 12th and 13th Supreme Soviets, and Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador to Latvia, Estonia, and Finland Mikhail Marynich was arrested on April 26, 2004. At present he is kept in KGB investigation detention center.