NEW YORK, July 10 (RAPSI) – Prosecutors in New York City have rejected a request to review the case of the jailed Russian pilot Konstantin Yaroshenko, who cited unlawful actions that allegedly took place during his detention, his attorney, Alexei Tarasov, told RIA Novosti.
In April 2011, Yaroshenko was sentenced to 20 years in prison for colluding to smuggle cocaine into the United States. He was caught after replying to an advertisement posted by US Drug Enforcement Administration agents who claimed they were selling a cargo plane for $1.
Yaroshenko pleaded not guilty during the trial, arguing that his poor English prevented him from understanding the nature of the deal. He said he did want to buy a plane, but that he did not plan to use it to transport drugs.
In June 2013, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York turned down his appeal of a 20-year sentence for drug trafficking. The court ruled that, under the law, neither police cruelty nor kidnapping by government agents could be considered grounds for appealing a verdict.
“The prosecutors say the court is not obliged to conduct an additional investigation or hold a new hearing on Yaroshenko’s case even in view of new evidence,” Tarasov said.
The alleged violations during Yaroshenko’s arrest include torture, abduction and a backdated fabrication of a deportation order by the US.
Tarasov said the prosecutors write in their 30-page reply letter that the verdict would not be reviewed even if the facts presented by Yaroshenko’s defense attorneys are true.
Konstantin Dolgov, the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Commissioner for Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law, earlier told RIA Novosti that they would continue working to ensure that doctors are given access to the jailed pilot and that FM Sergey Lavrov was personally monitoring the case. Dolgov also said that Russia would respond to any harmful actions that could affect Yaroshenko’s health.