Supreme Court turns down appeal by Mahilioŭ journalist
The Supreme Court represented by Deputy Chairman Ruslan Aniskevich considered an appeal by journalist Ales Burakou against an earlier decision of Mahilioŭ’s Lieninski District Court of 8 October 2014, which fined him 6 million rubles for the illegal production of media products, as well as the decision of the Mahilioŭ Regional Court of 20 November 2014, which upheld the judgment.
The official reply draws attention to the fact that Ales Burakou was found guilty of illicit manufacture of an article entitled “The Path of a Smuggler: Do Russian sanctions Work on the Border?”, which was posted on the website of the German radio Deutsche Welle on 25 August 2014. On this occasion, the journalist was charged with an administrative offense.
During the seizure of computers in Burakou’s apartment police officers found the materials which were used to write the article for the website, as well as the pictures that were posted online.
All this became the basis for the issuance of an administrative fine, because, according to the judge, Ales Burakou lacked accreditation but pursued his professional journalistic activity for the foreign media.
The journalist argued in his appeal that the police had violated his right to impart information, but the Supreme Court considered this argument unfounded.
Ales Burakou intends to appeal against the decision to the UN Human Rights Committee, as he has already exhausted all possible means of protection under the national law.