Russian court overturns ruling recovery of $258,000 from Navalny
MOSCOW, December 14 (RAPSI, Diana Gutsul) – The Moscow City Court has overturned a ruling of a lower court on recovery of 16 million rubles ($258,000) from Russian opposition politician Alexey Navalny in favor of Kirovles company, RAPSI learned on Wednesday from Navalny’s lawyer Vadim Kobzev.
On October 23 of 2015, the Nikulinsky District Court of Moscow ruled to recover this sum from Navalny as a compensation for caused damages. The court’s ruling was cancelled after the Supreme Court overturned sentences against Navalny and his accomplice Pyotr Ofitserov in Kirovles embezzlement case and sent it for retrial.
The ECHR ruled in February that Russia had violated Navalny's and and Pyotr Ofitserov’s right to a fair trial.
In particular, according to ECHR, sentences against them were issued with numerous violations because a lot of references were made regarding another defendant in the case Vyacheslav Opalyov. The proceedings against Opalyov were treated as a separated criminal case after he admitted his guilt.
Additionally, the ECHR noted that Russian courts failed to review claims by the defense that Kirovles case might have a political motive behind it and did not provide adequate evaluations of such claims. ECHR itself did not find a political motive in the case. The court ruled to compensate Navalny with 48,000 euros of legal costs and Ofitserov with 22,000 euros. Additionally, Russia is to pay 8,000 euro to each applicant in damages.
Russia’s Justice Ministry filed a request seeking referral of the case to the Grand Chamber of the ECHR, but the request was dismissed.
Russia's Supreme Court overturned in mid-November sentences against Navalny and Ofitserov in Kirovles embezzlement case and sent it for retrial.
Russia's Supreme Court delivered the ruling taking into consideration the judgement of the ECHR.
Navalny refused to attend the new trial.
According to investigators, while serving on a voluntary basis as an adviser to the Kirov Region governor Navalny organized the theft of over 10,000 cubic meters of timber from Kirovles company between May and September 2009.
Investigators claimed that Ofitserov, then Director of Vyatka Timber Company, and Kirovles CEO Opalyov were involved in the scheme.