Russian police detained investigative journalist Ivan Golunov on Friday and, in response to his lawyer, beat him whereas of their custody.
Golunov, an investigative reporter with Meduza, an unbiased outlet primarily based in Latvia, was reportedly stopped on the road by police, who declare to have discovered the drug mephedrone, also called bathtub salts, on his individual. They then took him into custody and refused to permit him to talk with a lawyer, in response to Meduza, which mentioned in an announcement that Golunov managed to move on the message by mates.
“When he’d lastly been granted entry to an lawyer, Ivan requested the police to take samples from his arms and fingernails for forensic evaluation that might decide if he was ever involved with the medication police say they discovered,” a prolonged assertion from Meduza Editor-in-Chief Ivan Kolpakov and CEO Galina Timchenko learn. “Ivan’s request was denied.”
His lawyer, Dmitry Dzhulai, informed the Moscow Instances that he was dragged throughout the ground whereas in custody and at the least one of many cops detaining him punched him within the face and kicked him within the chest. When Dzhulai requested to name the paramedics to doc Golunov’s accidents, the request was denied, Meduza reported.
Golunov’s reporting over time has focused the highly effective in Russia, together with Moscow’s deputy mayor — whose household Golunov revealed was gaining a fortune in actual property by authorities contracts — and a gaggle making an attempt to take over Russia’s funeral business, which he confirmed had ties to each a authorities official and a Neo-Nazi group.
Kolpakov, the Meduza editor-in-chief, informed BuzzFeed Information that Golunov has not eaten or slept over the past 30 hours. “He’s in a really dangerous situation, and might barely perceive what’s occurring,” Kolpakov mentioned, citing Golunov’s lawyer. “They’re going to arrest him formally tomorrow.”
Russian police claimed that they’d discovered giant portions of medicine in Golunov’s condo and printed footage of the alleged stash. Associates of Gulanov say that the condo seen within the images is not his, in response to the Guardian.
The pictures have been later deleted and the Russian Inside Ministry acknowledged that solely one of many 9 printed images have been really from Golunov’s condo. The remainder, they mentioned, have been from an ongoing effort to crackdown on drug trafficking within the nation. The ministry informed state-run outlet Tass that it’ll launch an investigation into why the pictures have been printed as if they have been all from the identical raid.
“All the things signifies that the authorities are planting medication on their targets to close them up with a jail sentence,” Natalia Zviagina, the director of Amnesty Worldwide’s consultant workplace in Russia, mentioned in an announcement. “Ivan Golunov is a outstanding critic and his investigations into authorities corruption clearly didn’t go down effectively with the authorities. It appears he’s now paying the value.”
Different Russian journalists rallied round Golunov on Friday. A small protest in entrance of Moscow’s police headquarters resulted in 15 journalists being detained.
“This can be a very harmful sign,” Ilya Barabanov of the BBC’s Russia service informed Meduza. “We’ve to answer this. They might use the identical scheme to place any undesirable journalist away for 10, 15, 20 years — no matter sentence comes to those individuals’s minds.”