Мониторинг дела Юрия Россошанского

On May 15, 2020, a hearing was held in the Shevchenkovsky District Court of Kiev in the case of Yuri Rossoshansky.

Yuri Rossoshansky is charged with the murder of lawyer Irina Nozdrovskaya. He is charged with paragraph 4 of Part 2 of Art. 115 (intentional murder committed with particular cruelty) of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

December 29, 2017 it became known about the disappearance of the famous human rights activist, lawyer Irina Nozdrovskaya. And on January 1, 2018, her body was found in a river near the village of Demidov in the Kievsky region. After some time, the police detained the murder suspect – Yuri Rossoshansky. Then he confessed to the crime, stating that he had killed I. Nozdrovskaya out of personal hostility, but he soon abandoned his testimonies. The defendant faces up to 15 years or life imprisonment.

At this session, the question of the advisability of extending the measure of restraint was considered.

The prosecutor filed a motion to extend the measure of restraint for another 60 days because Y. Rossoshansky was charged with a particularly serious crime. In his opinion, this will make it possible to prevent the commission of new crimes, as well as exerting influence on victims and witnesses. In this case, he draws attention to the hostile relationship that has developed with members of the family of I. Nozdrovskaya, who live in the same village with the accused. In this regard, the ISHR considers it necessary to indicate that the murder of Irina Nozdrovskaya is associated with the fact that she was a lawyer of the victim in the case of the murder of her sister – Svetlana Sapatinskaya. Guilty of the death of S. Sapatinskaya was found Dmitry Rossoshansky – the son of Yuri Rossoshansky.

The prosecutor referred to the risks stipulated by the Code of Criminal Procedure and noted that at the moment they persisted and other measures of restraint were insufficient to ensure the effectiveness of this proceedings. According to the prosecutor, the risks also exist because the accused may be hiding from the court. The lawyer of the victims supported the prosecutor.

The defense objected to the satisfaction of the prosecutor’s request, since the accused has been in custody for a long time (since January 2018). Attorney of Y. Rossoshansky believes that this violates the principle of legal certainty and it is necessary to resolve the issue of changing this measure of restraint to a personal obligation.

As for the risks, the defense side drew the court’s attention to the fact that:

  • Witnesses in the case have already been questioned and there is no risk of influence on them;
  • Regarding the risk of hiding from the court, the person’s social connections, age, whether crimes have been committed before, etc. must be taken into account. The accused is a pensioner, he is characterized positively at the place of residence and place of work, has not been prosecuted before.

Referring to this, the lawyer of Rossoshansky believes that the risks indicated by the prosecutor are unfounded and claims that his client did not commit this crime, therefore, there are not only no risks, but also objective evidence on which he was prosecuted. Yuri Rossoshansky fully supported his defender.

Also, the defense drew the court’s attention to the fact that, according to the Cabinet of Ministers Decree No. 211 of March 11, 2020, on self-isolation of persons over 60 years old, in connection with the situation in Ukraine, there is a risk of infection and the defendant is at risk. Therefore, according to the defense, the measure of restraint must be changed.

The ECtHR has repeatedly found a violation of Article 5 § 3 of the Convention in cases in which the domestic courts extended the applicant’s detention, referring mainly to the gravity of the charges and using stereotyped language, not taking into account the specific situation and not considering alternative measures of restraint ”(paragraph 144 of the judgment, dated May 22, 2012 in the case of “Idalov v. Russia”).

The Court observes that over time, the initial reasons for detention are becoming less and less substantial, and that the courts must proceed from “substantial” and “sufficient” grounds for prolonged imprisonment” (paragraph 54 of the judgment, dated February 10, 2011 in the case “Pelevin v. Russian Federation”).

However, the ECtHR accepts that the danger of a relapse if convincingly proven may constitute a basis for the judicial authorities to place a suspect in custody and to extend his detention in order to prevent any attempt to commit new crimes. In addition to observing other conditions, it is necessary that the danger is real, and that the assessment of the degree of danger be accurate, taking into account the circumstances of the case and, in particular, the previous facts and the identity of the suspect (paragraph 155 of the decision, dated June 24, 2010 in the case of “Veliyev v. Russia Federation”).

As regards to the risk of influencing witnesses and victims, the Court recalls in this connection that if, at the initial stages of the investigation, the risk of the accused being involved in the administration of justice could justify his detention, then after the evidence has been gathered, this reason may not become so obvious (Paragraph 69 of the judgment, dated September 20, 2011 in the case of “Fedorenko v. Russia”).

The International Society for Human Rights considers this proceeding to be extremely important, since earlier, together with the Initiative Group for the Defense of Lawyers, ISHR was involved in the study of violations of the rights of lawyers – “Defenseless Defenders” and, in this regard, has a lot of information about violations of the rights of lawyers in connection with their work in a specific proceedings. The murder of I. Nozdrovskaya is a vivid example of the insecurity of representatives of the lawyer profession. And, of course, a matter of considerable public interest.

As a result, the court granted the prosecutor’s motion to extend the measure of restraint by 60 days. The International Society for Human Rights will continue to monitor and refine the details of this proceeding.