On February 25, Mahiliou regional court considered an appeal in the case of Babruysk residents Ihar Bukas (54) and Aleh Bukas (24). The verdict passed by a lower court has been upheld.
In November 2020, the father and the son were convicted under Article 364 of the Criminal Code (‘violence or threat of violence against a police officer’). Ihar Bukas was sentenced to 4 years of imprisonment in a medium-security penal colony, his son – to 2 years in a minimum-security correction facility.
On August 10, when the post-election protests broke out in Belarus, the Bukas family had a fight with the police. The two men made an attempt to stand up for a driver who was facing a fine. But a policeman pinned Ihar Bukas down and pushed against his neck, having a truncheon on it. The son tried to protect his father, but the both were detained.
The convicts were held in pre-trial detention centre Nr 5 in Babruysk, where they were registered as ‘prone to extremism’. The men told their relatives that they were handcuffed even when being taken to the bath point.
Aleh is a father of a 8-month-old girl who has a weak heart. His daughter requires a roper surgery until she turns three years. In the regional court, the defence lawyer made mention of the child’s health issue, but the judge failed to consider it as mitigating circumstances.