Police pull Minsker out of car and batter. Now he may face up to 25 years in jail

Аlyaksandr Trotski in court. Photo: Belsat

On Wednesday, the trial of Alyaksandr Trotski started in Minsk City Court. The authorities claim the man attempted to kill a police officer.

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).

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The public prosecutor says that Alyaksandr Trotski who ‘knew about the situation in the capital city’ headed to downtown Minsk and ‘deliberately hit’ traffic police officer Yurau with his car, intending to kill him. According to him, Yurau stayed alive due to wearing an armour vest. Yurau did not appear in court; he is known to have got negligible injuries on that day. Nevertheless, Trotski was also charged with ‘attempted crime’ (Art. 14) and ‘murder of a police officer’ (Art. 362). If found guilty under the latter, the defendant may face up to 25 years in prison.

In court, the lawyer filed several motions; in particular, he asked to call in prospective witnesses – paramedic Barysau and police officers Martynenka and Andryevich. However, judge Syarhei Khrypach rejected the motion.

Alyaksandr Trotski pleads not guilty and demands the court acquit him.

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