Vitsebsk Chyhunachny Borough Court Sentences Public Activist Barys Khamaida to Two Fines
According to RFE/RL
On 9 March Vitsebsk Chyhunachny Borough Court considered two administrative cases against the opposition activist Barys Khamaida. One of them was brought for distribution of non-state press (on 7 February the police detained him for handing out BDG.Delovaya Gazeta in Lenin St., confiscated from him 41 copy of this registered edition and composed the violation report as a result the case was brought). The second case concerned the urge to boycott the election (on 22 February the police detained Mr Khamaida with the posters ‘Boycott of the election is a moral victory’).
At the trial Barys Khamaida explained his positing, stating he considered as legitimate only the Constitution of 1994 (not the Constitution of 1996, that was amended after a referendum) and there were no conditions for holding a really fair election in Belarus. The judge Ala Bardziukova listened to his arguments and answered: ‘I understand that you live according to the Constitution of 1994, while I work according to the Constitution of 1996. That’s why, according to part 1 of article 154 of the Code of Administrative Violations, non-licensed business activity, you are fined 651 000 rubles and according to part 2 of article 167, unauthorized picketing - 4 681 000 rubles.’
So, the total sum is 5 332 000 rubles. Now Mr Khamaida is a doubtless leader in Vitsebsk in the number and the total sum of the fines that were imposed on him for oppositional activity: according to the court decisions, he owes to the state more than 20 million rubles. However, during the last 12 years he hasn’t paid a single fine - he says he has no wish to support the present authorities with money.