Teacher sentenced to restriction of liberty, heavily fined over sharing post about police officers

Аlena Putsykovich with Belarusian Constitution in her hands. Photo: Viasna

On April 14, a guilty verdict was announced in the case of Alena Putsykovich, human rights centre Viasna reports. The teacher was tried in Ivanava district court (Brest region).

Alena Putsykovich was charged with libel (Article 188 of the Criminal Code) and sentenced to 2.5 years of restriction of without being sent to a correction facility.

On November 12, the woman shared a post to Telegram chat Ivanava for Living in order to ‘spread deliberately false information which harms the reputation of Alyaksandr Zadarozhny, a lead investigator of the group for combating economic crimes of the Ivanava district police department’, the prosecution states. Notably, the above mentioned post just reads that the policeman ‘filmed women holding white and red balloons and flowers and then gave false evidence against them in court’.

Yury Kotysh, the head of Drahichyn police department, who also claims he was hit by the teacher’s actions, asked to hold the trial behind the closed doors in order to ‘prevent the infringement of professional interests’.

The court also obligated Alena Putsykovich to pay off compensation to the two officers; each is to get 1,500 rubles.

Minsker sentenced to 5 years of restriction of liberty for comments about police on Telegram