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31.08.2006

Ex-policeman sentenced to 8 years imprisonment for violence against people detained in the Poltava region

   

On 23 August the Poltava Regional Appeal Court sentenced former officer of the Department on fighting organized crime [UBOZ] of the Ministry of Internal Affairs fin the Poltava region, Volodymyr Shchabliy, to 8 years deprivation of liberty for exceeding his official authority and using physical violence against those detained.

This is confirmed in the ruling passed by the Appeal Court, which however reduced the first instance court’s sentence of 10 years imprisonment by 2 years.

The Court found that the practice of “beating confessions” out of people who were not implicated in any crimes was widely used in the Poltava UBOZ

In particular, Shchabliy had been one of the officers who tortured to death businessman from the Chernihiv region Volodymyr Tsiselsky on 4 December 2003.

The detained man who was unfoundedly suspected of having stolen a gas turbine from a pipe line, the officers had used the brutal torture method “slonik” [literally, “little elephant”] where a gas mask is placed on the person’s head and cigarette smoke is puffed into it. , As a result Volodymyr Tsiselsky died of suffocation.

Four other officers of the Poltava UBOZ who were also charged with torturing the detained man have been put on the police wanted list – they have been in hiding since 2004.

The Poltava Region Prosecutor’s office laid charges of exceeding official authority and using physical violence against people detained and suspended them from their duties.

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