Brutally beaten activist sentenced to a fine
Activist Andrei Mouchan, who was brutally beaten by police, was fined by the court for walking down the street with a white-red-white Belarusian flag.
Sunday, 08 July 2012, by Belarusian HRH based on svaboda.org, spring96.org
The judge acknowledged that Andrei Mouchan held an unauthorised picket when walking down the street with a white-red-white flag, and sentenced the activist to a fine of 800,000 roubles (appr. EUR 77).
The two policemen who testified against him in court have both confirmed that Mouchan marched down the street carrying a flag, but from that point on then their testimonies diverged.
One of the police witnesses said that the activist called Aliaksandr Lukashenka a bad president and said something else in Belarusian.
The other witness did not hear any words or slogans, but somehow realised that Mouchan was swearing.
The police witnesses reported that they asked Mouchan politely to put down the flag, but he reacted aggressively, kicked the police car and even hit one policeman in the face. Because of this, they were forced to handcuff him.
It was reported that Andrei Mouchan was brutally beaten by the police during the arrest, which resulted in him getting into hospital.
The police witnesses did not mention the beating as allegedly they had not seen it.
Volha Mouchan, the activist's sister, who tried to help him during the arrest, testified in court that Andrei lost consciousness after one of the punches by police officers and was dragged into the police car by his arms and legs.
However, the judge ignored the fact that Mouchan was beaten, although it was confirmed by medical examination. Immediately after the advocate presented closing arguments, without a minute’s delay, the judge announced the verdict - 800,000 rubles fine for an unauthorised picket.
- I DID NOT SHOUT
After the trial, Andrei Mouchan said that he was going to appeal against the verdict, and called the court decision programmed and illegal. The activist reminded that he marched down the street carrying a flag as an act of solidarity with Siarhei Kavalenka, although he neither held a picket nor put forth any requirements.
"Of course I supported those who suffer for the flag. But I did not shout out any slogans or words", Andrei Mouchan said.
Belarusian HRH based on svaboda.org, spring96.org
- The activist of the civil campaign "European Belarus" Andrei Mouchan was arrested on 19 May when he spread out the national white-red-white flag and walked down the street in solidarity with the hunger-striker, Siarhei Kavalenka.
- A few minutes later a police car drove up to Andrei and the policemen requested him to come with them. Mouchan tried to clarify the reason for why he was being detained, after which police officers started to forcibly push him into the car without explaining the reasons for his detention.
- Andrei resisted, and the police used brute force. While he was beaten on the street, the second car drove up. Andrei was put in a car in handcuffs. The beating continued in the police car.
- According to a preliminary medical examination, Mouchan suffered traumatic brain injury, a broken jaw and ribs, beaten kidneys and legs.