Judge shields Jehovah's Witness from additional examination


Kavkazskii Uzel, 28 August 2020


The Maisky district court did not satisfy the request of the state's prosecutor to order a new expert analysis in the case of Jehovah's Witness Yury Zalipaev and it scheduled the debates of the sides for 18 September, lawyer Anton Omelchenko reported.


As Kavkazskii Uzel has written, the Maisky disrict court of Kabardino-Balkaria has been considering the case of Yury Zalipaev since 16 July 2018. While there has been a break in the session that has lasted almost a year. Then after the break, on 9 July the prosecutor did not appear in court and the session was postponed. The court can start the debates, but a petition by the prosecution is dragging out the process, Zalipaev's lawyer said at the time. On 27 July, based on a petition by the prosecutor, the court summoned for questioning the experts who had drawn the conclusion about an absence of evidence of extremism in Zalipaev's statements. On 24 August, in court, the authors of the expert analysis confirmed their conclusions. The lawyer again pointed out that the prosecution was unjustifiably dragging out the trial. On 26 August, the prosecutor requested a new expert analysis in the Zalipaev case, but the defense objected.


Today in the Maisky district court in the trial of Jehovah's Witness Yury Zalipaev, the court refused to grant the state prosecutor's request to order yet another expert analysis, lawyer Anton Omelchenko told a Kavkazskii Uzel correspondent.


"The ruling announced by the court was rather voluminous, analyzing the entire history of the issue of the use of special scientific knowledge in the Zalipaev case. The announcement took about an hour and a half," Omelchenko reported.


He said the judge took into consideration the conclusions of the experts. After this, the court moved to a discussion of the question of beginning the debates. "The state prosecutor requested time for preparing for the debates until 18 September 2020. The court granted this request and scheduled the session for 10.00 (Moscow time) on the indicated date," the attorney said.


We recall that in January 2019, a judge of the Maisky district court, on the basis of the prosecutor's petition, closed a criminal case against Zalipaev based on part 1 of article 282 of the Russian Criminal Code because of the decriminalization of actions falling under this article, but the indictment based on part 1 of article 280 of the Russian CC (public calls for conducting extremist activity) remained in force. (tr. by PDS, posted 31 August 2020)

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