Part Two of Article 205.5 of the Russian Criminal Code (participation in the activities of an organization recognized as ‘terrorist’ in Russia, namely the local cell of the Islamic Party of Liberation (Hizb ut-Tahrir al-Islami)
Jan. 23, 2015
5 years in general regime penal colony
Vaitov Rustem Mamutovich (born 1986), penal colony #1, 40 Vtoraya Chasovaya Str., Kurgan, 640008, Russia
days in custody
Rustem Vaitov was born in the Crimean village of Krestyanivka on July 27, 1986. He graduated from the National Academy of Nature Protection and Resort Development in Simferopol. He resided in Sevastopol with his wife and child until his arrest.
Vaitov describes himself as a public figure. He was engaged in an intense public activity, took part in the organization and carrying out of various events, including the renovation of a mosque in Sevastopol. He has a lot of friends and acquaintances of different confessions and ethnic origins.
In January 2015, FSB operatives conducted a search in Vaitov’s house. As an outcome, they confiscated all the kinds of data carriers (computers, CDs and USB flash drives). Rustem himself was arrested and accused of participating in the activity of the Islamic Party of Liberation (Hizb ut-Tahrir al-Islami) in the villages of Orlyne, Tylove, and Shturmove (Sevastopol’s Balaklava District).
Rustem has not pled guilty and refused to witness against himself during the investigation.
On September 7, 2016, the North Caucasus District Military Court in the Russian city of Rostov-on-Don sentenced him to 5 years in general regime penal colony.
Multiple violations took place in the course of the investigation:
- The court hearings regarding the extension of the preventive measure to Vaitov were not transparent. The audience was barred from entering the courtroom under various pretexts.
- The court violated the Vaitov’s right for defense by denying the presence of a public defender at the court hearings along with the lawyer.
- The court denied the access of the defense to the case materials that substantiated the prolongation of the detention term.
- The court dismissed the application of the defense on the disqualification of the judge filed on the basis of the abovementioned facts that point at his direct or indirect interest in the outcome of the case.
- The investigator did not provide the lawyer and the defendant with copies of the case materials. Thereby they were deprived of the possibility to file a relevant complaint and other rights guaranteed by Russian and international law.
- The investigator dismissed the application of the defense on the disqualification of the expert on the basis of his incompetence and bias.
- The investigation has kept secret the locations of the expertises, which contradicts Russia’s procedural law.