Head of Mahiliou Regional Court reverses ruling for punishment of Valery Vusik for libel and distribution of independent press
August Valery Vusik, civil activist from the village of
Lebiadzianka in the Bialynichy district, received by mail a ruling of
Ihar Prashko, the head of the Mahiliou Regional Court, to
his review appeal against the ruling of the Bialynichy District
Court, which entered into legal force and according to which he was
punished with a fine of 5 million rubles.
In this ruling, the head of the Mahiliou Regional Court concludes that the ruling for the punishment of Mr. Vusik was groundless, as far as the Bialynichy District Court didn't take into account his arguments and therefore the “conclusion about his guilt is premature”. Ihar Prashko also mentions as a violation on the part of the Bialynichy District Court that Valery Vusik's petition for being provided with a counsel wasn't granted.
The head of the Mahiliou Regional Court decided to cancel the verdict of the Bialynichy District Court from 29 March 2013 and the decision of the Mahiliou Regional Court from 25 April 2013 and sent the case for a new consideration at the Bialynichy District Court by another judge.
Bear in mind that on 29 March 2013 the head of the Bialynichy District Court Uladzimir Huz sentenced Valery Vusik to a vine of 3 million rubles for defaming the head of the SEC “Lebiadzianka” Piatro Bialou, and 2 million rubles – for violation of Article 17 of the Law “On Mass Media” during the distribution of the newspaper "Mahiliouski Vybar”. Thus, the total sum of the fine became 5 million rubles.
On 25 April the Mahiliou Regional Court considered the cassation appeal of the villager of Lebiadzianka Valery Vysik against the verdict of the Bialynichy court. Judge Pavel Klimau left the initial ruling in force and dismissed the appeal. He ignored the fact that Mr. Vusik wa deprived of the right to defence at the Bialynichy court, his witnesses weren't summonsed to the trial and his right to expression was violated.
On 5 July Valery Vusik filed an appeal to the head of the Mahiliou Regional Court, Ihar Prashko. In this appeal he asked to abolish the ruling of the Bialynichy District Court, according to which he was to be fined 5 million rubles.
Human rights activist Barys Bukhel says he is convinced of the innocence of Valery Vusis and they will be preparing for the new consideration of the case.
"The fact that Valery Vusik is innocent of the charges against him, was clear at once”, said Barys Bukhel. “Ihar Prashko drew attention to many irregularities in the proceedings at the Bialynichy District Court and the Mahiliou Regional Court and reversed the verdict. Doubtlessly, we hoped that the case would be dropped, but the head of the Mahiliou Regional Court returned it for retrial by the BialyniChy District Court. Now we will prepare to it in order to prove that Valery Vusik was persecuted only because he revealed shortcomings and irregularities in the management of SEC "Lebiadzianka", including in the independent press."