Memorial considers case against Ruslan Kutayev fabricated

posted 22 May 2017, 03:46 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 22 May 2017, 03:47 ]
15 May 2017


The civic activist Ruslan Kutaev, who is serving a sentence in prison colony No. 2 at Chernokozovo in the Naurovsky district of the Chechen republic, has applied for parole.

On 7 July 2014 the Urus-Martanovsky court in Chechnya had found Kutaev guilty of the possession of narcotics (under Article 228, Part 2, of the Criminal Code) and sentenced him to 4 years in a general-regime prison colony, and imposed a further one-year prohibition on his participation in public events or involvement in civic activities.

On 31 October 2014 the Chechen Supreme Court’s collegium for criminal cases heard the appeal against Kutaev’s conviction, lodged by his lawyers, and reduced the sentence to 3 years 10 months.

The Memorial Human Rights Centre (Moscow) includes Ruslan Kutaev in its list of political prisoners. In the view of the human rights activists at Memorial, the criminal case against him was a fabrication.

On 10 March 2017 his case for parole was heard in the Naurovsky district court. Ten statements in support of Kutaev were submitted, and also the fact that he had received no reprimands for breaking prison regulations. However, on the day of the hearing of the case, the court received notification to the effect that the day before Ruslan Kutaev had not turned up for the evening inspection and had in this instance broken the prison rules. No documents providing evidence of such an infringement were presented to the court. However, the Naurisky district court refused the request for parole on the basis of this notification.

The defence lawyer for Ruslan Kutaev appealed the decision in Chechnya’s Supreme Court. arguing that the refusal was not grounded in fact and the infringement, cited by the district court, had not occurred. On 11 May 2017 the Supreme Court of the Chechen republic turned the appeal down. Kutayev was refused permission to attend the

Translated by Mary McAuley