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Public prosecutor demands a fine of 1000 base values for Maryna Zolatava

2019 2019-02-25T17:23:37+0300 2019-02-25T17:23:37+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
Public prosecutor on trial of Maryna Zolatava

Public prosecutor on trial of Maryna Zolatava

The Zavadski District Court of Minsk continues the criminal trial of Maryna Zolatava, TUT.BY chief editor, who is accused of omission of an executive. On February 25, oral arguments took place.

TUT.BY reports that the prosecutor asked to enter into the case file the sanction of the Prosecutor General to carry out active search measures against Zolatava dd March 19, 2018. TUT.BY chief editor's phone was wiretapped with his consent.

Previously, the court has heard that a phone conversation between Maryna Zolatava and editor Hanna Kaltyhina in which the chief editor wondered whether Hanna used the paid subscription, was wiretapped in March 2018 illegally. It was done before the BetTa agency appealed to the Ministry of Interior, who then began to investigate the unauthorized accesses.

The prosecutor stated that the unauthorized use of information is a crime; there was no politics in prosecution. Maryna Zolatava should have and could have signed a contract with BelTA and stopped the illegal actions of her subordinates.

The public prosecutor demanded a fine of one thousand base values (approximately $12,000) for Maryna Zolatava.

The representative of the civil plaintiff, lawyer Mr Pankau, sought to recover from Zolatava 6,000 rubles, reports TUT.BY. This is the amount BelTA spent on its legal counsels.

"Undermining business reputation lasted throughout the whole trial; there was allegedly some political context behind it," said Pankau in court. "For some reason, this case is called the 'BelTA case.' The victim turns into the offender."

In her argument, TUT.BY chief editor's lawyer Maryna Varabjova stated that the Investigation Committee had dismissed the criminal case against the journalists because if they went to trial, it would be clear for everyone that none of them had committed a crime.

She noted that not "all wrong actions fall under the criminal code," informs TUT.BY.

The lawyer repudiated the claim of 3.5 thousand rubles, which BelTA made for the troubleshooting because the company had to carry out the vulnerability check continuously, every month to prevent news leak.

"I believe the best outcome of this case is the acquittal," said Maryna Varabjova.

In her last word, Maryna Zolatava noted that in this trial, she had three prosecutors and one defender.

"The public prosecutor pointed out that I pleaded entirely guilty, but this never happened. I admitted the guilt in part. My alleged awareness (of the fact that the TUT.BY editorial staff used the BelTA subscription) is substantiated by a strange statement that I work in the same room with my subordinates. I don't look at other people's screens, and I have no such physical possibility," said TUT.BY chief editor.

The verdict will be announced on Monday, March 4, at 12.30 am.


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