Brest: Elderly activist gets three years of restriction of liberty, faces new administrative charge

On Friday afternoon, 64-year-old activist Alena Hnauk came to Leninski district court of Brest to hear out a verdict in the case initiated against her for ‘insulting the president’ (Article 368 of the Criminal Code).

Аlena Hnauk in Brest court. 15 April 2021. Photo: Belsat

Predictably, today Ms Hnauk has been sentenced to three years of restriction of liberty without being sent to a correctional facility. It was the public prosecutor Mikhail Bulyhin who demanded she get such term, and judge Dzmitry Kurouski took heed of his demand. The materials of this case read that she said a negative appraisal phrase in the House of Justice, which ‘publicly insulted’ Alyaksandr Lukashenka. Alena says that there was no corpus delicti on her part, she just spoke wrongfully about Lukashenka, but without insulting him.

In the spring of 2021, Alena Hnauk was tried in the so called round dance case for ‘organisation and preparation of actions that grossly violate public order’ (Article 342 of the Criminal Code). Then, she got two years of restriction of liberty without being sent to a correctional facility.

When the judge was reading out the sentence, the defendant took out a phone to take a picture of him, which Kurouski apparently did not like. After his calling security guards, the woman was detained and taken to Leninski district police department; an administrative case was initiated against her.

(UPD) Alena Hnauk has been released, but summoned to court on September 5, human rights centre Viasna reports. It is still unknown what she has been charged with.

Brest pensioner facing freedom restriction for insulting Lukashenka