The Third Hearing in the Orlov’s case. Nukhazhiev is not Aware of What Kadyrov said

On October 14, 2010 the third court hearing in criminal case on libel initiated against the Head of Council of Human Rights Center Memorial, Oleg Orlov, took place at the court department No. 363 of Khamovniki district of Moscow.

Before the commencement of both the first and second hearings those who wished to attend the sittings were admitted to the court hall 5 to 10 minutes in advance. Yesterday, however, by 10:30 a.m. already all of the 14 seats had been occupied by strong young Chechen men. Some of them told that they had come from Chechnya and were students of Moscow universities. Only upon strong requests were some additional chairs brought, and a few correspondents and other interested parties managed to have a seat in the hall.

The third hearing started with the representative's of the injured Andrey Krasnenkov's giving up his own motion. At the end of the previous hearing that took place on September 27, Krasnenkov addressed the judge with a motion to carry out another linguistic examination of the text of HRC Memorial’s statement On the murder of Natasha Estemirova (http://www.memo.ru/eng/news/2009/07/17/1707091.htm). Those who attended the hearing had a strange impression about the fact that the public prosecutor was puzzled by such a motion. She requested time to discuss the question and define the prosecution’s position. The judge had to postpone the decision relating the issue till the next hearing. So, on October 14, at the third hearing, Ramzan Kadyrov's representative said that he gave up his motion about another linguistic examination. The lawyer of the accused Henry Reznik expressed his satisfaction regarding the decision: "I dare hope that I've made the representative of the injured listen to reason that the motion was absolutely untenable <...> I can only agree now that the representative of the accused has taken a correct stand."  

During the hearing three witnesses from the prosecution side – President of Russian Educational Fund, a member of expert councils at the State Duma Committees on security and education, Sergey Komkov, Ombudsman in the Chechen Republic, Nurdi Nukhazhiev, and Adam Delimkhanov's, the State Duma Deputy's assistant Ismail Dadalaev.

Komkov and Dadalaev hardly reported on the facts related to the charges filed to Orlov. Rather, they would asses Orlov’s statement that he had made upon the murder of Natalya Estemirova, recalled how other people reacted to it and gave general characteristic of the current situation in the Chechen Republic.

Ombudsman Nukhazhiev was the only one who spoke on the substance. However, his testimonies left peculiar impression. At first, Nukhazhiev was trying to refuse to answer Orlov’s questions, but after the latter turned to judge Morozova she stressed his duty as a witness to answer the questions.

During the questioning Nukhazhiev stated that HRC Memorial allegedly accused Kadyrov of taking part in the killings of Stanislav Markelov, Anastasia Baburova and Zarema Sadulaeva. However, answering lawyer Reznik's questions, Nukhazhiev had to admit that these words did not correspond to the facts.

Nukhazhiev was saying that he “knew nothing”, “didn’t have the relevant information”, “could say nothing about it” on a number of questions that were addressed to him by lawyer Reznik and Orlov, specifically, about people abductions and Ramzan Kadyrov’s public statements about Natalya Estemirova and Memorial, about shootings upon women without scarves from paintball guns in Grozny and so on. According to Orlov, Nukhazhiev is either apparently not the right person for his post or he was deliberately giving misleading answers to the bench.

Ismail Dadalaev had previously been a director of the Department on the President of the Chechen Republic administration interaction with law enforcement authorities, in 2004 he was a deputy commander of the oil regiment. It was particularly surprising that while answering lawyer Reznik’s questions he told that he had just then [during the hearing] heard the deputy Delimkhanov’s, for whom he is working, sayings, which had been widely quoted by the media (the following Delimkhanov’s words are being referred to, “There some so-called politicians, quotation marks, there are such people calling themselves human rights activists, who are assisting these shaitans and representing their interests and protecting their activities. <…> We will fulfill the duties imposed on us by President Ramzan. Allah grants us his help in exterminating these shaitans, these criminals and those who assist them and those who are supporting them in their minds”; http://www.memo.ru/2009/07/16/1607096.htm). Nevertheless, the deputy assistant gave the following comments on these words: Delimkhanov implied the criminals solely – the boeviks and their accomplices.

That was the end of the prosecution witnesses’ questioning process. The following hearing that is to take place on November 2, at 12 p.m., is to be fully dedicated to final representation of the prosecution materials (the documents that comprise the case materials). Besides, the prosecution has stated that it was going to file a petition.

The full transcript of the third hearing will be uploaded to HRC Memorial website in the nearest future. Please, see the materials of the civil and criminal cases in the “Court” section at Memorial's web-site: http://www.memo.ru/2009/09/10/sud.htm.

October 15, 2010