20-year-old Russian accused of organizing protest

Yegor Dudnikov. Photo from family archive

Yegor Dudnikov was detained in Minsk on May 5. After a search, he was taken to the KGB detention center, reports HRC Vyasna.

He faces up to three years in jail on charges of organizing actions that grossly violate public order (Part 1 Article 342 of the Criminal Code). Police would not let a lawyer see Yegor.

His mother Yulia is sure that Yegor moved to Minsk because he fell in love with a girl several years ago. Here he also voiced cartoons, anime, games, commercials, processed texts, worked as a part-time editor, and sometimes as a loader.

“The main purpose of this was to stay in Minsk, because he was dating a girl, they were making plans,” says Yulia.

On May 5, Yegor Dudnikov walked the girl to the house, promised his mother that he would call her back, and disappeared. The woman called her son all night, but he was unavailable. The next day she learned that Yegor had been detained, in his apartment during the search they found and seized only a microphone.

“To be honest, I did not think that the presence of a microphone could be sufficient grounds for detention. Especially considering that the man is engaged in audio processing,” says Yegor’s mother.

For several days, the police department telephoned Yulia and said they did not have anyone with that last name. Then the mother decided to fly to Minsk on her own and found Yegor’s attorney on duty, who informed her that her son was kept in the KGB detention center and that he would be charged.

The lawyer was not allowed to see Yegor for two weeks, so the mother does not know any circumstances of the case. During this time she received only one letter from her son: “He writes how much he misses us and how sorry he is that he made us so sad. Because he really understands that we are all going crazy here worrying about him. To the girl he writes that he misses her and loves her. He hopes that their future plans will be together… He writes, but everything is imbued with a kind of despair, a deadlock from the fact that everything broke down on nothing.”

Yegor’s mother knows that during this time he was interrogated and filmed on video camera. She fears that because of the pressure in the KGB and during investigations without a lawyer, Yegor may “talk too much” on himself:

“He’s a 20-year-old boy in love, but in no way an organizer, not an uprising preparer.”

Yulia said that Yegor was detained last October when he stood up for a child they wanted to detain. According to his mother, her son “managed to avoid arrest, because when they started beating him [the officers], he had heart pain.” Then Yegor was taken to the hospital.