Kurapaty vandals are amnestied
As said to the BelaPAN by the investigator of Minsk district police department Siarhei Bulko, on 30 May two Minsk dwellers, who were charged with destruction of the memorial crosses to Stalinism victims in Kurapaty forest near Minsk were amnestied.
The criminal case under Article 346 part 2 of the Criminal Code (defilement of historical and cultural monuments) was brought by Barauliany department of the police department of Minsk city executive committee on 11 November 2008 against two youngsters, one of who was learning in school, and the other – in a technical college.
On 11 January 2009 the investigator of Barauliany branch of Minsk district police department Alena Khilchuk stopped the criminal persecution of the suspects because of lack of evidence for passing the case to court and punishment of the suspects.
At the end of January the deputy prosecutor of Minsk district Ernest Kairo found the investigator’s actions ‘unlawful and groundless’. As a result, on 29 January the criminal case was directed to Minsk district police department for additional investigation. Since 28 February it was being investigated by S.Bulko.
According to the investigator, the destructed memorial crosses weren’t historical or cultural monuments, that’s why he changed the accusation article and on 27 May the youngsters were accused of malignant hooliganism (Article 339 of the Criminal Code, part 2) for which they could be punished with 3-6 months of arrest, up to 5 years of personal restraint or 1-6 years of imprisonment. It was the first time when the investigation presented charges to concrete persons concerning acts of vandalism in Kurapaty.
As stated by S.Bulko, on 30 May the prosecutor’s office of Minsk district confirmed his ruling to grant parole to the accused, who agreed to it, within the frames of the latest amnesty, declared by the government to mark the 65th anniversary of liberation of the country from the German Nazi troops.
At present two more criminal cases on vandalism in Kurapaty are under investigation.