Person of the Week: Ludmila Kuzmina

posted 6 Apr 2015, 09:07 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 6 Apr 2015, 10:26 ]
On 31 March 2015 police in Samara evicted Ludmila Kuzmina, regional leader of Golos, an independent election monitor, from her apartment and impounded other property in a tax-evasion case. Tax authorities claim the Samara region branch of Golos owes at least 2 million roubles in taxes on funding provided by USAID between 2010 and 2012. Golos argues that the donations were tax exempt. Ludmila Kuzmina told RFE/RL the case against her is politically motivated. Earlier in March, a Samara court dismissed an appeal by the Samara branch of Golos against a fine imposed for failing to register as a 'foreign agent,' a designation imposed on groups that receive foreign funding and are considered to be engaged in political activity. Following a ruling of April 2014 by the Constitutional Court that the national Golos' national organization should not be designated a 'foreign agent', the Ministry of Justice, which maintains the register and has the authority to unilaterally 'designate' a non-profit as a 'foreign agent', nonetheless kept Golos on the register.

'Russian Electoral Rights Group Leader's Property Seized,' RFE/RL, 31 March 2015
Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber, ‘Regional Golos Head's Home, Office Raided,’ The Moscow Times, 5 February 2015
Alexey Eremenko, 'Russian NGO Golos Still Labeled "Foreign Agent" Despite Court Ruling,' Lawyer Says, The Moscow Times, 27 November 2014
GOLOS Association, Wikipedia

Golos' current website: