The Supreme Court of Belarus has upheld the sentence of 45-year-old Minsk resident Alyaksandr Trotski. He was accused of driving his car over the leg of a traffic policeman. These actions were qualified by the investigation as attempted murder of a police officer.
As reported earlier, prosecutor Anton Tsyumentsau demanded the defendant get 11 years of imprisonment. On March 5, judge Syarhei Hrypach sentenced Trotski to 10 years in a medium security penal colony.
The defense of the political prisoner appealed the verdict to the Supreme Court. But judge Uladzimir Charavach dismissed the political prisoner’s complaint.
On August 12, amid the post-election protests in the country, Alyaksandr Trotski drove his own car in the city centre. When he was making a turn to Victors’ Avenue, about 10 armed men in black stopped the car and ordered the driver to step out of the vehicle. As they failed to introduce themselves, he refused. After they threatened him with guns, Trotski got scared and pulled off. When doing so, he slightly hit a policeman. Trotski was immediately overhauled, taken out of the car and severely beaten. Reportedly, the officers put a gun into his mouth.
At first, the driver was taken to hospital, where he was diagnosed with traumatic brain injury and blackout. During his stay, he had to be handcuffed to the bed when lying. Later, the man was transferred to the pre-trial detention centre on Valadarski Street. He was accused of ‘violence or threat of violence against a police officer’ (Article 364 of the Criminal Code); then he was also charged with ‘attempted crime’ (Art. 14) and ‘murder of a police officer’ (Art. 362).
Alyaksandr Trotski pleaded not guilty and asked the court to acquit him. According to the man, he suddenly left the scene because he feared for his own life. The defendant admitted that he hit the traffic police officer by accident and expressed his readiness to cover all losses. The victim, police major Uladzimir Yurau, got negligible leg injuries on that day.
This is one of the harshest sentences a prosecutor has sought in connection with the August protests against election fraud. Alyaksandr Kardzyukou, a witness to the murder of Henadz Shutau in Brest, was also sentenced to 10 years for allegedly attempting to murder the security officer.