13.12.2002 | Ludmila Sokolenko, Nikolay Kozyrev

A consecutive court over B. Feldman has finished


On Saturday, 14 September, the Lugansk appeal court remained in force the verdict of the Artemovsk district court of 19 April 2002, due to which Boris Feldman, the former vice-president of the bank „Slavianskiy“, was condemned to nine years of incarceration with confiscation of his property.

The court also issued two particular decisions concerning Feldman’s advocates: they are accused of abusing advocate ethics, which, as the court decisions read, imply the termination of advocate practices.

Immediately after the court session, at the improvised press conference in the court building Feldman’s advocate Andrey Fedur told that in the court resolution just issued he counted during hearing it more than ten contradictions. After the reception of the court resolution the advocates intend to hand complaints to the Supreme Court of Ukraine and the Europe Court. It is interesting that during the press conference judge Svetlana Zaporozhchenko left the court building and came to her car surrounded by a dense guard of militiamen.

A. Fedur believes that the advocates are brought to responsibility for their professional position and for conscientious fulfillment of their duties. „Such particular decisions mean for us only one thing – we shall defend B. Feldman even more carefully and better“, he said. He also said that his client asked him to declare on his behalf that he accepted the verdict calmly and would continue to fight for his rights.

„I do not understand“, the advocate said, „why the court was in such a haste. When judge Zaporozhchenko made known on Friday that the next court session would be held on Saturday, we protested: Boris Feldman obeys Jewish religious traditions, and the court would better respect this. Yet, the court did not pay attention to the religious feelings of the defendant, more probably, they decided to finish the case before 16 September“.

On Saturday the court worked as for a bonus – from 9:00 to 20:00. The first reverberations of the thunder sounded in the very beginning of the court session. When B. Feldman attempted to congratulate the Lugansk dwellers present in the courtroom with the Day of Lugansk, S. Zaporozhchenko began to cry.

After this the chairwoman without any court decision prohibited video filming. In the beginning of the court session of 27 August, by the petition of the advocates, the court ruled to record the session with audio and video equipment. So, to cancel the already taken decision a new decision was needed, not only the wish of the chairwoman.

After a two-hour-long Feldman’s speech (he continued the previous day speech, in which he explained to the judges the absurdity of the verdict taken in the absence of the proven criminal event) and a short interval judge Zaporozhchenko stopped the defendant’s speech and passed the floor to prosecutor S. Burdeyny.

The advocates were indignant that Feldman was not permitted to finish his speech. They asked to continue the process. The chairwoman ignored the demands of the advocates and insisted on giving the floor to the prosecutor.

The prosecutor’s speech more than once was interrupted by Feldman’s advocates’ remarks and protests.

The prosecutor finished his speech by the request to leave the verdict of the first instance court almost without changes.

The judge declared the end of the discussion and proposed Feldman to pronounce his final plea. The advocates protested: they insisted on their right to comment the prosecutor’s speech before this, but the judge ignored this demand.

Boris Feldman’s final plea lasted for one hour and a half and mainly contained criticism of the existing court system dependant on the authorities’ whims.

After the plea judge Zaporozhchenko announced that the court would withdraw to the debate room.

Five hours later the verdict was declared. Feldman was deprived of his final plea again.

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