Preparatory Court Session on Afgan Mukhtarly Case
2017 November 30 ( Thursday ) 14:16:19
Baku / 30.11.17 / Turan: On Thursday, the District Court of the Balakan region (450 km from Baku), under the chairmanship of Humbat Salimov held a preparatory meeting on the case of the journalist Afgan Mukhtarly accused of smuggling and illegal border crossing.
As one of the lawyers of the journalist Nemat Kerimli told Turan, the beginning of the trial was scheduled for December 14 at 10:30 am.
At the same time, the judge granted the solicitation of the lawyers who asked to allow Mukhtarly to sit next to them. However, the judge rejected the petition for termination of the criminal proceedings, the abolition of the arrest and the expulsion of evidence illegally obtained from the case materials. He also refused to invite several witnesses who testified in favor of Mukhtarly to the court.
Recall that while holding a temporary residence permit in Georgia the journalist Afgan Mukhtarly was kidnapped in the center of Tbilisi on May 29 and then transferred to Azerbaijan. According to him, this was done by the employees of the criminal police of Georgia together with law enforcement bodies of Azerbaijan.
When crossing the border, he was planted 10 thousand euros in his pocket and accused of smuggling this money. The next day Mukhtarly was in Baku, where the court arrested him on charges under three articles: 315 (resisting the authorities), 318.1 (illegal crossing of the state border) and 206.1 (smuggling).
Mukhtarly is recognized as a political prisoner by local and international human rights defenders. His colleagues are convinced that he is being persecuted for his critical publications about corruption in the highest echelons of power in Azerbaijan. -03B-