Babruisk: Maryna Malchanava has got a fine of 32 basic units
Bobruisk Judge Natalia Charapuha announced the court decision of the case of an independent journalist Maryna Malchanova on September 25. Recalling, she was accused of cooperation with foreign media without accreditation.
The court session began with an examination of Bobruisk policeman Aliaxej Hancharou. He acted as a witness, because participated in the "inspection of the place of an administrative violation." That is, he was in the office of lieutenant-colonel Siarhej Rud'ko while checking the website of "Belsat" TV channel.
AliaxejHancharou said that thematerial on the sitewas made in theform of a dialogue; theycopied itand putin the protocol.The judgeaskedwhat the matter of the web-site checking was.
- I was asked to attend, but I didn’t ask for what exactly, - explained the policeman.
Maryna Malchanava again filed a motion, this time in written form, concerning materials of the trial of journalist Ales Zaleuski, and the judge again rejected it. The lawyer asked to attach this motion to the case papers, Natalia Charapuha agreed to do it.
Maryna Malchanava again gave an explanation about the conversation with the heroine of a report about the charity movement. Judge read out request made by Siarhej Rud'ko to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the answer on it. She also read out the request of the police officer to the police department in Krasnopolie to question the heroine of reportage.
There was also read out the protocol of conversation of the district police officer Uladzimir Basiankou with the heroine of the story. This police officer had to be at the hearing as a witness, but didn’t come. He explained that day he was working. The report of Basiankou says that he showed to the heroine of the reportage three photos of women, among which was a passport photo, and on it she identified the journalist.
Lawyer of Maryna Malchanava explained to the court that her client cannot be punished under the article in violation of which she is accused. She noted that Malchanova is a person, but the Article 22.9 of the Administrative Code provides the punishment of legal entities. She also explained the difference between finished media products, and the collection of materials, referred to the article 34 of the Constitution, which guarantees free collection and circulation of information by any citizen of Belarus.
According to the testimony of the heroine of reporting Maryna Malchanava didn’t make records by hand or on tape, so it is impossible to prove that it was her who did a text version for the site "Belsat", said the lawyer. She asked why the police were not looking for a videographer, and why did not asked for clarification the "Belsat" editors. "The administrative process is carried improperly," - said the lawyer, and called it absurd.
After an hour break, Judge Natalia Charapuha read out the court ruling: Malchanava is found to be guilty in violation of the Article 22.9 in the second part proved, and sentenced to the fine of 32 basic units (4.8 million rubles).
Maryna Malchanava expressed a desire to file an appeal to the regional court.