Political prisoner Uladzislau Zianevich sentenced to 3 years of restricted freedom
Judge Maryna Zapasnik of the Lieninski District Court of Minsk sentenced political prisoner Uladzislau Zianevich to three years of restricted freedom in an open penitentiary (so-called “khimiya”), finding him guilty under Article 342 of the Criminal Code. The convict was released in the courtroom pending an appeal hearing.
Uladzislau Zianevich was accused of intentionally taking part in group actions violating public order on November 1. Namely, he took part in an unauthorized protest, shouted slogans, raised his hands and walked on the roadway. The defendant allegedly he did not respond to the demands of police officers. This led to disruption of public transport.
Minsktrans, the government-owned public transport operator, asked to collect from Zianevich 10,689.76 in property damage.
Zianevich pleaded not guilty.
The political prisoner refused to testify in court, exercising his right not to testify against himself. He also waived his right to last statement.
The defendant’s lawyer stresses that there is no evidence of Zianevich’s guilt in the case file. He also noted that his client could not be in the place indicated in the indictment, since at this very moment he was being detained in a different location, according to a police report.
“The entire prosecution is based on two videos,” the lawyer said. “However, it is impossible to say for sure that my client is in any of them.”
Uladzislau Zianevich, a 20-year-old anti-fascist from Minsk, was arrested on November 30. He was earlier detained and fined for attending the protest on November 1. The youth was reportedly beaten and his apartment was searched. Zianevich was declared a political prisoner.