Convicts on Autukhovich’s case comment on the verdict

2010 2010-05-07T16:28:57+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

The political prisoners, who stood trial in Minsk 6 on May, say the case against them was fabricated. Human rights activists call on high officials to resign.

The sentence by the Supreme Court in the so called ‘terrorist case’ was a surprise for most observers. What do the accused, the prosecutor and lawyers think the court decision? The political prisoners shared their views with RFE/RL.

’It’s not important for me what the court will say, it’s important what people think’, Mikalai Autukhovich said.

Prisoner Uladzimir Asipenka noted: ‘What can I say, it’s a fabricated case’.

Human rights activist Aleh Vouchak thinks high-ranking prosecutors and officials of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, who prepared the case, which failed in the court, should resign.

‘If there had been an order to deliver a verdict over terrorism, it would have been delivered. I don’t think it’s a great merit of the judge. It was obvious from the beginning that it was nothing to try them for. It was another politic action. They didn’t want to raise tension in the society,’ the human rights activist noted.

Representative of the prosecutor’s office Eldar Safarau left the court room after the court had delivered its verdict, so journalists didn’t interview him.

Bear in mind that political prisoner Mikalai Autukhovich, arrested in February 2009, was sentenced by the Supreme Court to 5 years and 2 months in a maximum security colony, Uladzimir Asipenka got 3 years in a minimum regime colony.

The accused were freed from a number of charges, namely preparation of a terrorist attack against the former chairman of the Hrodna Regional Executive Committee Uladzimir Sauchanka and an attempt on the former deputy Taxes and Charges Minister Vasil Kamenka. Only observation with the aim of finding damaging information was proved. The court admitted that the defendants haven't committed socially dangerous acts. The charges concerning arson of the former head of the Interior Affairs Directorate of Vaukavysk Siarhei Katsuba in 2004 have been dismissed as well.

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