16 January 2018, Tuesday, 17:55

Judge Komar sentenced a human rights activist to 10 days in jail


The court of the Frunzenski district of Minsk found human rights activist from Vitsebsk Pavel Levinau guilty of violating article 17.1 of the Code of Administrative Offences (disorderly condict) and punished him with a 10-day administrative arrest.

The judgement was delivered by judge Volha Komar. Earlier, February 17, she gave four years in prison to Vasil Parfyankou charged under the mass riot case. She was put on the EU travel ban list.

As BelaPAN learned from the head of the Vitsebk branch of the United Civil Party, Volha Karach, two policemen, who had detained Levinau, witnessed in the court that he had used obscene language. The same policemen were witnesses at the trial against Karach and Pavel Staneuski. When the police officers were detaining Levinau on April 19, they said he was suspected in involvement in the terrorist attack in Minsk metro. “But today this question has not been raised,” Karach said.

The court of the Frunzenski district has sent the administrative case against Pavel Staneuski, an activist of Our House civil campaign, for additional investigation. As the activist told BelaPAN, he was accused of swearing (article 17.1 of the Code of Administrative Offences). Witnesses, the policemen, were not sure in their testimony. One of them said the activist had been swearing at the moment when the policemen were detaining him, the other said he had done after the detention. “The policemen are lying, but I do not know what purpose they have. They know that I could have got up to 15 days of arrest, but they give false evidence,” Staneuski said.

As reported earlier, policemen visited an apartment of the daughter of human rights activist Valer Shchukin in Minsk, when she and her friends were celebrating her birthday on April 19. They checked IDs of all people present and went away to return later and detained everybody. Eighteen people were guarded to a police department. They were questioned, some of them fingerprinted and photographed. Administrative reports against Volha Karach, Pavel Levinau, journalist Aleh Barshcheuski, and Pavel Staneuski were drawn up.

On April 20, the court of the Frunzenski district of Minsk found Aleh Barshcheuski guilty of swearing and sentenced him to a 10-day arrest. Volha Karach was also accused of using obscene language and fined 20 basic units (700,000 Belarusian rubles).

“Our detention by the police and today’s trial are something unbelievable that cannot be explained logically,” Karach thinks. According to her, the policemen witnessed in court that she had sworn and disobeyed to police officers on April 19.

“I spent 24 hours in a cold room without food, then I was taken to court. They made an absurd report saying that I fought with policemen and eight police officers were not able to cope with me. If you believe police reports, you may think that the apartment of Shchukin’s daughter was a criminal den: I was fighting with police, while my colleagues were swearing and fighting, too,” Karach said.