Kharkiv Police mark Human Rights Day their own way: Yakov Strogan heavily beaten
A hearing over preventive measures took place in the Kievsky District Court in Kharkiv on Friday of Yakov Strogan. As reported, Mr Strogan has been at the centre of a scandal after he reported being brutally tortured and beaten by officers of the Kievsky District Police Station. The ATN correspondent present in the court reports that Mr Strogan arrived showing clear signs of having been beaten.
During the hearing an ambulance needed to be called. The doctors who examined him registered beatings. A correspondent from ATN Kharkiv reports that he had been badly beaten, he had a black eye, signs of suffocation around his neck and bleeding over his whole body.
Mr Strogan told journalists that the day before when he had yet again arrived at the Kievsky District Police Station to give testimony, his lawyer was thrown out of the office and he himself was without any court order arrested. He said that at first he had been put in a temporary holding cell, then several hours later was called to be photographed. After that, in the presence of the investigator, officers began beating him. He was thrown to the floor, stripped naked and subjected to ill-treatment through the night. When he began quite weak, they called an ambulance and paid the doctors to not register the call. Mr Strogan says that from the police station he was taken to a SIZO [remand unit].
Human rights defenders are convinced that Yakov Strogan was arrested purely to prevent an investigation into his previous allegations of torture.
The court remanded him in custody despite the fact that the Kharkiv Human Rights Group offered to guarantee his appearance in court.