2011 26/08
Жодзінскі ГАЎС з адзьдзяленьнем ІЧУ

Zhodzina police department

Discussions on this topic and a brief comparative analysis of two very vivid trials in Zhodzina are presented here grounding on two trials in which one and the same citizen, a human rights defender, had to participate as a defendant (30.06.2011) and as an applicant (8.22 .2011). Thus, during 1 month Aliaksiey Lapitsky had to talk to the police twice: about the incidents of 29.06.2011 which happened in the town’s square, and the incident of 29.7.2011 happened near the living house.

In the first case he suffered from police’s fabrication of the case and for the first time in his life was imprisoned for five days of administrative detention in Zhodzina detention centre, for asking militia officer to be a witness of violation of public order by people in civilian clothes. The second case –he was knife attacked by a stranger near the entrance of a house.

As is known, on 22.08.2011 from 9-00 to 9-50 in Zhodzina Town Court the administrative trial took place on the criminal assault of M. Yakautsou who lived in Skaryna str, house 3 of Zhodzina human rights activist Aliaksiey Lapitski. The man attaked Aliaksiey near the 4th entrance of a multistory building and inflicted bodily harm with a knife – a wound on the right hand.

As the result of the proceedings and considerations of the circumstances of the protocol on administrative violation of 29.7.2011 under Art. 09.01 of the Administrative Code of the Republic of Belarus “Intentional infliction of physical injury”, circumstances of the case have fully confirmed. Witnesses Svetlana Lapitskaya and Piatro Hancharou, Yakautsou’s friend, were interviewed. The court fined M. Yakautsou the minimum sentence, prescribed by that article – a fine of 10 basic units (350 thousand BYR)

Thus, with the help of some officials from Zhodzina militia department, who directly conducted the investigation on the call of S. Lapitskaya, all the fallowing aggravating circumstances of the offense were not taken into account and were ignored (for details, see here).

As it turned out in court, militia officers, who were required to investigate and record all the relevant circumstances of the incident accurately, made up the protocol with errors, immediately tried to hush up the matter, first referring to the inability to prove the identity of the assailant, and then to the fact that the offender refused to open the door and didn’t let them in for investigation. Again for some reason helplessly they referred to the victim, apparently for him to withdraw the application to militia because of the inability to conduct a proper investigation and prepare a full-court materials.

Moreover, they ignored the request of the victim about the necessity of drug testing in order to fix the state of intoxication of the offender, and it was further emphasized by the judge M. Samoyla.

Аляксей Лапіцкі, Жодзіна

Аliaksiey Lapitski, Zhodzina

Aliaksiey Lapitsky commented on the court decision and what he was able to observe while his appealing to militia, passing the expert examination and the trial itself: “It is surprising that such a deliberate and unsafe criminal acts conducted by an obvious supporter of the current political regime in the country are covered by the servants of the law, militia. They can, as we see, at the very least penalize the obvious offender with 10 basic amounts, and at the same time they can punish opponents of the current governing regime who didn’t cause the slightest disturbance of public order with imprisonment, based on a completely falsified evidence (in our case, on 30.06.2011 – 5 days)”.

– Who can explain to me today, for what crime was I sentenced for five days of custody in the Zhodzina detention center after the trial of 06.30.2011 and from 29.06.2011 till 07.04.2011 was forced to be deprived of my liberty, and from 01.07.2011 to 04.07.2011 I was transferred into another chamber which was in fact specially created torture conditions! (Administrator of the detention centre Z. Mialeshka, responded to my request for a placement quite on the contrary – he has placed me among the prisoners who constantly smoked, and provided them with cigarettes at all 200%!)

Maybe it’s all a coincidence?! No, Z. Mialeshka explained his decision by saying that “he felt like doing this”! Alternatively, the guard of the law offered me a solitary cell, but at the same time promised to put brawlers and drunks regularly there.

And I had to stand all this “joy” just for the fact that I and my wife, Sviatlana came up to militia officers and told about our readiness to testify in the militia department and prosecutors about misconduct and violation of public order in the square by the unknown in civilian clothes. (As it turned out later the offenders turned out to be militia officers and operatives under the direct supervision of Deputy Chief of Zhodzina militia department, Siarhey Siaviets)?! As a result after being a witness of the violation committed by one of the heads of militia department I was immediately turned into a victim of a corporate irresponsible service, corruption and militia’s self-will.

Сяргей Севец, намесьнік начальніка ГАЎС

Siarhiey Siaviets, deputy head of the police department in Zhodzina

And the court in such circumstances is just a mere formality, a cover for cynical administrative proceedings. Our Zhodzina court this time again had to “close its eyes” and “its ears”, and to obey the command “from the top” but not required by law.

– Who can now judge at the full extent of the law a senior official from the local department of internal affairs, the executive committee or the prosecutors?! And even the usual ordinary representative of the electorate …!? Where to watch the city attorney? What do the investigating officers do, when they are doing ordinary run-around replies to specific complaints regarding these cases of violation of rights and freedoms, criminal abuse of authority, failure to meet the commitments on human rights, including the cases of corruption in the government …!?

It appeared that on the trial of 30.06.2011 the same judge M. Samoyla completely ignored the testimony of all (!) civilian witnesses in the process, refused to fully investigate the circumstances and physical evidence (photos), punished the innocent, the whole “problem” of whom is democratic and legal convictions, focusing on the implementation of their own inalienable constitutional rights and freedoms …

And what about the case of the armed attack on human rights defender and criminal actions of drunken M. Yakautsou, “, who didn’t bear verbal defeat by as he said BNF member (“people’s enemy” – the term of the official propaganda) using the jackknife …!

The actions of the same Zhodzina militia department, court and judges … (see above) – in this situation look quite different when compared to the political process of 06.3.2011. They, as if it is needed so much, imbue with compassion and humanity for a real and offender, even help him with the making the materials to the court, in fact – to help the offender to avoid taking responsibility by law (!).

And it’s hard not to notice that a real, in fact, officially sanctioned discrimination (for language and political grounds) is happening here, discrimination against the rights of citizens to use their own civilian status (some have it, but for others it is optional), regarding the inherent rights and freedoms for a necessary effective judicial protection …

The disease progresses with the deteriorating economic situation in the country, it is becoming more evident and dangerous to society. Because hostility against the dissenting, multiplied by monopolized mass media and ideological services at enterprises and institutions, as a result of irresponsible policies and the official propaganda multiplying impatience, is appearing from everywhere out of the, “rotten authoritarian mechanisms of the ideological superstructure,” and results thoughtless aggressiveness at the lower level.

During the worsening of economic situation and propaganda’s categorical focus on finding the responsible (the “enemies of the people”) – just one spark is enough to ignite the flame and harm everybody – everybody is a victim after the fire in the house. Such carelessness dangerously and naturally encourages unmotivated aggression and conflicts on the horizontal level of everyday life. And only a criminal layer in power, fed up on the division of society and opposition of the various interests of people can be interested in it.

It is now trying to bypass the Constitution and to form a real system of Gulag and subjugate all around … and led by “His Majesty” deceit, betrayal and cynicism, by force and fear – to rule completely corrupted, fused into a single “criminal hierarchy” nomenclature mechanisms of state suppression of human rights and freedoms, political persecution, to remain in power indefinitely.

Conclusions drawn from the specific experiences of the last two (in only 2 months) very indicative administrative cases, court sessions and sentences are showing that the problem does really exists.

How this problem will be solved and whether it will be solved at all in our circumstances – it is a question for the high and middle-range officials responsible for the current unacceptable state of affairs in the law enforcement and judicial practice, it is a question to officials, prosecutors, courts, the Interior Ministry …

In any case, the more these issues of inequality of civil status and conditions while protecting the rights and freedoms of citizens are being ignored, the less you can say about efficiency and fairness of law enforcement and judicial mechanisms in Belarus, their independence from the dictates of ideological expediency, all absorbing and dominating “vertical” executive power and unchallenged authoritarian ways of ruling the country.

Ales Volny,

Belarusian Legal Portal


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