On January 18, 2022, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) delivered a judgment on case No26679/08 – "Nevzlin vs. Russia”. Representatives of the claimant tried to get from the ECtHR a documental confirmation, which as a ruling of the court, about certain discrimination and political prosecution of their client. And, finally, they saw it coming – the ECHR has announced its decision. As to the fugitive paymaster of murders, he didn’t make any personal statements, and only a certain press service of him published a statement on his own page on Facebook.
Consistency, as known, is a sign of mastery. Even if the question is about the mastery in lying and twisting facts. In this form of art, the representatives of the paymaster of murders accused in absentia are true to themselves and rather skilled.
In its statement, the press service of Nevzlin announced some assertions. Let’s look at them more attentively and prove if they correspond to the decision of the ECtHR, the original of which one can find on the official site of the European Court of Human Rights.
THE ECTHR DID NOT CONSIDER AT ALL THE FACT OF THE CRIMINAL CASE ON THE BASES OF WHICH NEVZLIN WAS SENTENCED TO LIFE IMPRISONMENT
So, Nevzlin’s press service declares: "The ECtHR confirmed that the criminal case against him was unjust", having forgotten, perhaps, that the ECtHR assesses only in principal availability or lack of any violations in the domain of human rights during court proceedings. The ECtHR has never taken the function of giving value judgments, "just" or "unjust".
Further, the press service of Nevzlin declares: “In Russia, there never has been and never could be any evidence corroborating the forged criminal accusations leveled against him”. This statement could have been big news, had it been true, but, alas… And then follows a simple juggling with facts and manipulation. "The ECtHR de facto admits it, having made its own conclusions concerning the gross violations of Mr. Nevzlin’s basic rights”.
Twisting the essence of the decision, Nevzlin’s press service humbly evades "dangerous” for his reputation parts, concealing the fact that in the decision of the court there is no mention that the ECtHR does not consider at all the facts of the criminal case, on the bases of which Nevzlin was sentenced to life imprisonment, from the point of view of their availability or absence. By the way, the complaint itself from his representatives dealt not with acknowledging availability or absence of contracts and organizing of murders by their clients, but with other questions.
Instead, there are, indeed, many important points in the decision of the Court.
Let us consider paragraph 115. It, in particular, reads: “The Court was not provided with any other evidence in the case demonstrating that the judge had displayed bias”.
Let us consider paragraph 119 of the judgment of the Court, which, in its essence, refutes everything said by Nevzlin’s press service. It, in particular, reads: In the present case the Court observes that, contrary to the applicant's allegations, his conviction was based on a separate set of evidence, including witness statements given by perpetrators and victims who had testified about the applicant's role in the imputed crimes during the investigation and the trial".
This means, however refined the twisting of facts by Nevzlin’s press service, the judgment of the ECtHR (paragraph 119) doesn’t put in question the ruling of the Russian court that had passed the sentence upon Nevzlin.
One would think, what is there else to talk about, but, continuing the consideration of ECtHR's judgment, let us discuss two more interesting and important facts to understand the real position of the ECtHR.
Paragraph 120 reads: “The Court finds that this complaint is unsubstantiated, as nothing in the hearing records confirmed the applicant’s allegation of pre-determined guilt. Overall, the applicant failed to provide any evidence in support of his allegation that the principle of the presumption of innocence had hot been respected in his case”.
Paragraph 124 reads: “The Court has no reason to find otherwise in the present case, as it was not provided with any evidence of an alleged ulterior purpose behind the applicant’s criminal prosecution. Neither was the Court provided with evidence of alleged discrimination against the applicant during the proceedings…”
It means, if one attentively studies the judgment of the ECtHR on this case, that the Court, in fact, recognized some extremely important and essential points in the case:
- the judge was unbiased (paragraph 115);
- the accusation of Nevzlin was based on a separate set of evidence testifying Nevzlin’s role in the imputed crimes (paragraph 119);
- with regard to Nevzlin, presumption of innocence was observed (paragraph 120);
- the court didn’t see any hidden purpose of the criminal prosecution (paragraph 124).
The willingness of the press service of the accused organizer of murders to pass off the Judgement of the ECtHR of January 18, 2022, for certain "victory", turns out, in fact, a travesty and an attempt "to put a brave face on the defeat”.
The conclusions of Nevzlin’s press service that "the continuing prosecution of Mr. Nevzlin by the Russian authorities has always been politically motivated" are lies, which are even not impertinent, but rather habitual.
It is worth noting that, evidently, Nevzlin himself understands this, as he has not only made any personal statement, although he has never missed a possibility to remind once more of himself in the media domain, but he has even refused of commentaries for the BBC which hardly be suspected of pro-Russian position, and under the pretext that "any commentary could be used in the continuing in Dutch courts proceedings on the claim of the former Yukos shareholders against Russia".
The mentioning in the statement of the press service of Pichugin, Nevzlin’s henchman in organizing murders, is simply a regular effort to speculate on the old theme. However, they have been doing it already for 18 years and have been regularly making such “plants”.
“NEVZLIN’S LAWYER WAS INVITED FOR ACQUAINTANCE WITH THE MATERIALS OF THE CASE, BUT HE DID NOT TURN UP”
What has recognized the European Court of Human Rights, that have considered the claims of the former shareholder of the oil company Yukos, sentenced in absentia to life imprisonment for organizing murders?
The Court found out the violation of Nevzlin’s right to a fair court hearing. To be more concrete, the claimant, according to the Court in Strasbourg, was not properly informed of the character and grounds of the accusation leveled against him (Article 6, paragraph 3 (a) of the European Convention on Human rights). Apart from that, he was not provided with enough time to prepare his defense (Article 6, paragraph 3 (b).
As to “violations”, journalists of the agency “RAPSI” have perfectly expressed themselves and have reminded that “Dmitry Kharitonov, the lawyer of the former co-owner of Yukos, had been invited for getting acquainted with the materials of the case in December 2007, but he didn’t turn up. As the advocate didn’t fulfill his duties as a representative of the claimant, Nevzlin was provided with a court-appointed lawyer who studied all materials of the case and received a copy of the final letter of accusation.
Apart from that, the Russian government argued that the defense had been provided with sufficient time to prepare for the proceedings, as the hearings were repeatedly postponed, but the defense of the claimant didn’t use this opportunity”.
In other words, the escaped to Israel Leonid Nevzlin expressly ignored the court proceedings and even forbade his lawyer to take part in them, but in the eyes of the ECtHR he appeared as an innocent victim who "had not been provided with sufficient time and a possibility to prepare his defense" and "had not been informed adequately about the character and grounds of the accusation leveled against him".
“By the way, literally soon there will be a tragic anniversary – January 21, 1998, 24 years ago, by order of Nevzlin, was killed Valentina Korneyeva, the head of the trading firm “Feniks” She had stubbornly refused to sell premises in a house that the managers of Yukos had taken fancy to”, notes the website Prigovor.ru».
By Alexander Zhelnin
See the Russian version of the current article at: https://flb.ru/1/4589.html