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Activist Handed 4-Year Prison Term in Warsaw Case

Published: February 12, 2014 (Issue # 1797)



  • Lyovkins lawyer, Gleb Lavrentyev, and his mother, Olga Lyovkina, with pictures of Lyovkin at Mondays news conference.
    Photo: Sergey Chernov / SPT

Denis Lyovkin, a 20-year-old activist held for more than one year in the so-called Warsaw Case, was sentenced to four years in prison Tuesday by Judge Irina Eizhvertina for assaulting two police officers at a protest. On Feb. 4, the state prosecutor asked that Lyovkin be sentenced to 4 1/2 years behind bars.

Lyovkin took part in an attempt to save a historic warehouse belonging to the now-defunct Warsaw Railway Station from demolition on Feb. 4, 2013, which is believed to be St. Petersburgs first protest to result in criminal charges being brought.

The defense claimed that the indictment against Lyovkin is based purely on false evidence given by police officers.

Related: Railway Station Probe Continues to Unfold

The officers were allegedly injured when the police stormed the warehouse.

According to witnesses, police acted with force, knocking down and beating the protesters. At a police station, Lyovkin was singled out of the 22 detained activists and charged with assaulting the policemen, before being transferred to the Kresty prison. The remaining activists were charged with holding an illegal rally and disobeying police orders.

Testimony against Lyovkin was given by six police officers including the Admiralteisky District police chief Grigory Klebanov.

Related: Police Evict Warehouse Squatters in Violent Clashes

Thats when much became clear to me. I understood that the investigation was over before it had even started, Olga Lyovkina, the activists mother, told a news conference on Monday.

The testimony by the police took away any hope for a fair and competent investigation. Lyovkina said she had collected photographs to prove Lyovkins innocence herself, but they were completely ignored by the investigators.

I understood the reason, she said.Its elementary; if they admit the obvious that Denis is not guilty the testimony by the police officers headed by the Admiralteisky District police chief automatically become perjury, something that the system, that the investigators, could not let happen. The system short-circuited. Even the victims themselves are not interested in who assaulted them in reality. I did not expect that it would be so absurd.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Saturday, Aug. 2


Gatchina Palace Park Museum will host its second annual Night of Light, an impressive audio-visual show across the night sky. Tickets are 600 rubles ($16).


If graphic design is more your thing then check out Illustration Day, where you will be able to visit an exhibition, attend lectures by professionals and even show experts some of your own work. The event starts at noon at Zona Deystvia, 73 Ligovsky Prospekt. The entrance fee is 350 rubles ($10).



Sunday, Aug. 3


History lovers shouldnt miss the chance to see reenactments of World War I battles in Pushkin at noon. Besides exciting war scenes, visitors can enjoy live music, historical costumes, an equestrian show and a fancy-dress parade starting from the Moscow gates.


Garage Sale, the popular and growing flea market where nothing is priced over 500 rubles ($14.11), starts today at noon in Loft-Project Etagi, 74 Ligovsky Prospekt. Be sure to get in early to score a bargain. Entry costs 50 rubles ($1.40)



Monday, Aug. 4


Continue the working week with a calm and steady mind with a free yoga lesson at 7 p.m. in the Bukvoyed store at 23A Vladimirsky Prospekt.



Tuesday, Aug. 5


Visit The Romanov Dynasty doll exhibition today, where more than fifty porcelain dolls depicting Russian rulers, and made by Olina Ventzel, will be on show. The exhibition continues through Aug. 31 in Sheremetyev Palace, 34 Fontanka Naberezhnaya.



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