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Civic Assistance -komitean raportti Zara Murtazalievan tapauksesta.
Zara Murtazalievan tapaus
Zara Murtazalieva tuli Moskovaan etsimään työtä syyskuussa 2003. Asuttuaan parissa eri osoitteessa Zara tutustui Venäjän sisäministeriön järjestäytyneen rikollisuuden vastaisen toimiston poliisiupseeriin Said Ahmajeviin. Ahmajev auttoi Zaraa ja hänen kahta ystävätärtään kaikin tavoin ja antoi heidän asua eräässä asuntolahuoneessa ilmaiseksi. Myöhemmin kävi ilmi, että Ahmajev teki näin esimiestensä käskystä. Zaralle ja hänen ystävättärilleen annettuun huoneeseen oli sijoitettu kuuntelu- ja videonauhoituslaitteet. Juuri ennen, kuin Zara oli muuttamassa uuteen asuntoonsa, FSB tutki hänen tavaransa löytämättä mitään. FSB-upseeri oli erittäin kiinnostunut valokuvista, jotka esittivät Zaraa ja hänen ystävättäriään eräässä ostoskeskuksessa uuden vuoden juhlien aikana.
Maaliskuun 4. 2004 töiden jälkeen poliisi pysätti Zaran henkilöpapereiden tarkistamista varten. Hänet vietiin poliisiasemalle toiselle puolen kaupunkia henkilöllisyyden todentamista varten. Zaralta otettiin sormenjäljet ja hän sai lähteä. Lähtiessä Zara huomasi laukkunsa aikaisempaa painavammaksi. Poliisi tarkasti laukun ja sieltä löytyi kaksi folioon käärittyä pakettia jotka sisälsivät räjähdysainetta "Plastite-4".
Zara Murtazalieva pidätettiin ja rikossyyte nostettiin häntä vastaan Venäjän federaation rikoslain 222 artiklan perusteella, joka koskee laitonta räjähdysaineitten hankkimista, varastointia ja kuljettamista. Esitutkinnan aikana rikostutkijat painostivat Zaran ystävättäriä Anna Kulikovaa ja Daria Voroninaa antamaan lausunnot, joiden mukaan Zara oli yrittänyt saada tyttöjä mukaan terrorismitoimintaan ja antanut heille koulutusta terroritekojen suorittamiseksi.
25. lokakuuta 2004 Valentina Kulikova, Annan äiti tuli Civic Assistance -komiteaan hakemaan tukea. Hän kertoi komitean johtajalle Svetlana Gannushkinalle, että hänen tytärtään uhkaillaan, että jos hän ei anna halutunlaisia lausuntoja, niin hänet haastetaan oikeuteen rikoskumppanina eikä todistajana. Todisteena Zaran aikomuksesta räjäyttää kauppakeskuksessa sijainnut hissi käytettiin hänen huoneessaan salaa nauhoitettuja keskusteluja tyttöjen välillä, jotka käsittelivät eri aiheita, mm Islamia ja Tshetshenian sotaa. Todisteena käytettiin myös Zaralta löydettyjä valokuvia, joissa mainittu hissi näkyy. Tällä tavoin todisteet terrorismista keitettiin kokoon.
Zaran oikeudenkäynti alkoi 22. joulukuuta 2004. Zaraa syytettiin neljän eri artiklan perusteella, joista maksimituomiot vaihtelivat 4-12 vuoteen vankeutta. Tuomari M. A. Komorova ei myöntänyt puolustukselle lupaa käyttää tukenaan Civic Assistance -komitean edustajaa E. Z. Rjabininaa. Puolustusta myös kiellettiin nauhoittamasta oikeuden istuntoja. Tuomari ilmoitti, että oikeussalissa käytettiin erikoislaitteita, jotka paljastaisivat kaikki nauhoitusyritykset.
Oikeudenkäynnissä todistaneet rikostutkijat eivät osanneet selittää, miksei Zaralta löydetyistä räjähdepaketeista tutkittu sormenjälkiä, eikä Zaran käsiä ja kynnenalusia tutkittu räjähdysainejäämien paljastamiseksi.
Tammikuun 13. 2005 syytetty Zara Murtazalieva todisti. Hän kiisti poliisin version siitä missä ja miten hänet oli pidätetty. Hän kertoi, että hänet oli pahoinpidelty poliisiasemalla ja hänet pakotettiin allekirjoittamaan tunnustus rikollisista aikeistaan. Hän kertoi oikeussalille, että todisteena käytetyistä ääninauhoista tehty puhtaaksikirjoitus sisälsi ilmaisuja, joita ei ollut itse nauhoilla. Tuomari Komarova eväsi puolustuksen kaikki pyynnöt kutsua ylimääräisiä todistajia, mukaanlukien Said Ahmajev.
Tammikuun 17. pidetyssä istunnossa annettiin loppulausunnot. Puolustuksen mukaan syyttäjä ei tarjonnut oikeudelle lainkaan todisteita syytetyn syyllisyydestä ja että syyttäjän lausunnot olivat ainoastaan yksityisiä mielipiteitä. Tuomio annettiin, Zara Murtazalieva todettiin syylliseksi ja tuomittiin yhdeksäksi vuodeksi vankeuteen.
Esteemed Colleagues, We appeal to you to pay attention to Zara Murtazalievas case - a monstrous fabrication of terrorism charges.
On March 4, 2004, Zara Murtazalieva, a student taking three courses at the University of Linguistics in Paytigorsk, was arrested in Moscow. Zara, a native of the Naursk region of the Chechen Republic, was born in 1983.
Zara came to Moscow in September, 2003, hoping to find a job to support her widowed mother, as her two younger sisters had just graduated from high school and had to continue their education. For this reason, she was forced to transfer to correspondence courses.
She found a job with an insurance company and rented a room. However, she was soon forced to leave this room under pressure from her landlord. By this time, she had met two girls from Moscow, Anna Kulikova and Dariya Voronova, who had recently adopted Islam. Zara met them in a mosque. The girls made friends and Anna suggested that Zara should stay at her place. Valentina Mikhailovna Kulikova, Annas mother, agreed to have her daughters friend stay with them and for some time Zara stayed with the Kulikov family. Zara made a good impression on Valentina Kulikova.
Shortly thereafter, Zara, Dariya and Anna decided to live on their own. At the same time, Zara made the acquaintance of an officer from the Bureau for Fighting Organized Crime of the Moscow Main Department of Internal Affairs, Said Akhmaev. Said began to help girls in every way and offered to let them live in a dormitory room for free. It turned out that Said took care of the girls at his bosss orders and that the room was equipped with bugs. Shortly before the girls moved over to the dormitory, an FSB officer visited Valentina Kulilova at her office, informed her that an investigation had been opened in connection with Zara and asked her permission to examine the Kulakovs apartment when Anna and Zara were not there. V. M. Kulikova agreed to the search but was never shown any documents authorizing it. In the course of the search, the special service officer was interested only in Zaras belongings. There was nothing dubious found among her belongings, but the officer demonstrated incomprehensible interest in photographs the girls had taken during the New Years holidays at the Okhotny Ryad, Mall where they often went to the Internet Cafe.
On March 4 in the evening, after work, Zara was stopped by policemen for a document check near the Kitay Gorod area. She was brought to the other side of Moscow - Prospekt Vernadskogo police station for identification. They took her fingerprints and said that when she was done she could go. Zara washed her hands, took her handbag, and was going to leave the police station when she noticed that her bag was heavier that it was before. The police asked to see her bag for inspection and they found two briquettes wrapped in foil that turned out to be two packages containing 196 grams of an explosive named Plastite- 4.
Zara Murtazalieva was arrested and a criminal case was brought against her in accordance with article 222 p.1 of the RF Criminal Code on unlawful acquisition, storage and transportation of explosive materials. In the course of the preliminary investigation, the investigating agency pressed Anna Kulikova and Daria Voronina to provide statements to the effect that Murtazalieva tried to involve them in terrorist activity and trained them to commit terrorist acts.
On October 25, 2004, V. M. Kulikova came to the Civic Assistance Committee for support. She told Svetlana Gannushkina, chief of the Committee, that her daughter was threatened that if she did not give the demanded statements, she would be brought into the criminal case, not as a witness, but as an accomplice. The investigation, which was started by the Nikulinskaya Prosecutors office, was transferred because of its urgency to the Department for the Investigation of Murders and Brigandage of the Moscow Prosecutor's office, and then to the Department of FIB of Moscow and the Moscow region. As proof of Murtazalievas criminal intent to blow up the escalator at the Okhotny Ryad Trade Complex, the transcripts of the girls recorded conversations were cited. Those conversations covered different topics, among them topics concerning Islam and girls attitudes to the Chechen war. Also, among the photographs that were used as evidence were pictures of the above m entioned escalator. In this way, a case on terrorism consisting of four volumes was fabricated.
Zara Murtazalieva was charged in accordance with the following articles of the RF Criminal Code:
Article 30 p.1 preparation of crime and attempted crime
Article 205 p. 1 terrorism, punishable by 8-12 years in prison
Article 205 p. 1 recruiting to commit crimes of terrorist character, punishable
by 4-8 years in prison
Article 222 p.2 unlawful acquisition, storage and transportation of explosives,
maximum punishment imprisonment of up to 4 years
The trial of Z. X. Murtazalievas case began on December 22, 2004 at 10.30. Judge M.A. Komorova on the board of criminal cases of the Moscow city court presides over the case. Legal defense is performed by attorney Z.T. Usmanova. The examination in court of prosecution witnesses, A. Kulikova and D. Voronova, did not corroborate information from the preliminary examination indicating that Murtazalieva tried to persuade them to commit a terrorist act.
In this session, Judge Komorova denied Murtazalievas petition, supported by her lawyer, to admit defender E.Z. Ryabinina, representative of the Civic Assistance Committee.
On December 23, 2004, the petition was entered again, this time in written form, and it was again denied. In the face of this developing situation, and also in connection with the illness of defense lawyer, Z. T. Usmanova, the Civic Assistance Committee and the Migration Rights Network of Memorial Human Rights Center enlisted the services of Attorney V. K. Suvorov to help defend Murtazalieva.
On January 12, 2005, the proceedings resumed. Judge Kormorova unlawfully prohibited Attorney Suvorov to tape record the proceedings, depriving the defense of the ability to make observations later based on the contents of the court proceedings. She repeated the prohibition the next day. Furthermore, the judge informed the public audience of her intention to use special equipment to locate active recording devices in the courtroom.
During their examination, witnesses on staff at OVD (Vernadsky Prospect) could not clearly explain why fingerprints were not taken from the wrappings of the explosives discovered in Murtazalievas bag or why there was no investigation of her finger nails or tests of her hands.
On the same day, Svetlana Gannushkina, Director of the Civic Assistance Committee, was examined. She testified that on October 25, 2004, Valentina Mikhailovna Kulikova appealed to her as a human rights defender. Kulikova told her about the pressure put on her and her daughter during the investigation. An investigator told Kulikova, You should be thrown in jail along with your daughter. Trying to get the needed testimony, investigators interrogated them for eight hours in a row, spoke in threatening tones and asked her daughter unpleasant questions. Gannushkina also refuted the charges that Murtazalieva proposed to the girls that they go to a suicide bomber camp near Baku for training. According to information that she got directly from the leadership of MNB (Ministry of National Security) in Azerbaijan and which was verified by MNB Azerbaijan and FSB Russia, there are no such camps in that republic.
In this court session, public prosecutor U. Safina presented physical evidence supporting the charges: an audiocassette taken from Murtazalieva with songs written by Vladimir Voronova and Timur Mutsuraev and an excerpt from a bugged conversation between Kulikova and Voronova about emotions which the songs arouse in girls.
On January 13, 2005, the defendant testified. The examination continued for several hours. Zara Murtazalieva denied the prosecutions case about the place and way she was detained. She explained that she was beaten at Petrovka 38 and they forced her to sign a confession about her criminal intentions. She also told the court that the transcription of the audio recordings contained phrases that were not on the tapes. She answered the question about how she felt about her friends testifying against her saying that she doesnt blame them. If they were questioned using the same methods as they used with me, then they had no choice. I survived because I am not guilty and I was saving myself. They were forced to save themselves.
Zaras examination ended with the examination of the photographs confiscated from her. On a fully used roll of film (36 pictures), the investigation and the court were only interested in the six which showed the escalator at the Okhotny Ryad, Mall.
After that they examined V.M. Kulikova for the second time. She confirmed everything Gannushkina said a day earlier. She clarified that she didnt explicitly tell the court about the pressure the investigation put on her and her daughter during the first examination because the staff of the special services really scared her and demanded that she not tell anyone. After Anas examination, I understood that I had to defend these three foolish girls. My civic conscience wont let me keep quiet. They tried to break the girls and they put their dirty hands in my soul, said Valentina Mikhailovna, explaining why she appealed to the Civic Assistance Committee and appeared in court a second time.
Further, on the initiative of the defense, the secretly recorded videos were shown. On Murtazalievas request the showing was private because she refused to allow the public showing of videos of her and her friends changing clothes and performing hygienic routines.
After the showing, the general public was not admitted into the court. According to the defense, Judge Komarova denied all their requests to call additional witnesses, including Said Akhmaev. She also refused to admit Murtazalieva, Kulikova, and Voronova to a hospital for comprehensive psychological-psychiatric testing, and made the decision to close the court trial.
On January 17, 2005, closing arguments are scheduled. The session will begin at 10:30.
On January 17, from 11 am to 2 pm, closing arguments were made. This time, Judge Komarova allowed not only audio but also video taping and let all the journalists into the courtroom.
The prosecution asked for:
Article 205, part 1 prime, of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation 7 years (recruiting to commit terrorist acts)
Article 205, part 1, of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation 6 years (preparing a terrorist act)
Article 222 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation 4 years (storage of explosives)
Combined 12 years
The defense argued that the prosecution didnt bring any evidence of the guilt of the defendant and the statements of the public prosecutor constitute a private opinion.
At 4 pm the verdict was given: Zara Murtazalieva was found guilty and sentenced to serve 9 years in a general security prison.
Head of the Civic Assistance Committee,
Member of the MEMORIAL HRC Council
Member of the RF President Council for Human Rights
Svetlana Gannushkina - 251-53-19 (w), 105-91-45 (m)
Elena Riabinina - 251-53-19 (w), 8-903-197-0434 (m)