Defence asks court to suspend assessment of photographic evidence

Victor Anufriev, Dmitriev’s defence attorney, intends to petition against the court’s decision to schedule a new forensic examination of photographs from the case of Yury Dmitriev. The lawyer is not satisfied with the choice of the Federal Department for Independent Forensic Assessment, proposed by the Petrozavodsk prosecutor.

“In court, I proposed two State expert institutions: the Serbsky Centre or the Medical Examination Centre of the Russian Ministry of Health, but the judge flatly refused to entrust this case to such authoritative bodies,” Anufriev said. “At first, the prosecutor insisted on the Intellectual Property Agency from Moscow. I was against it. When I heard the words ‘federal department’, I thought it was a State-run organization, but it turned out to be a private firm. And it’s even worse than the previous one. I petitioned for Professor Lev Shcheglov and myself to participate in the assessment process. The judge replied that such a petition must be submitted during a hearing in court. This is a violation of the law! I can make a petition at any time and in any form. In response, I sent another petition, requesting that the assessment be suspended.”

The Federal Department for Independent Forensic Assessment is a commercial organization with statutory capital of 10,000 roubles [80 US dollars at the street exchange rate]. Anufriev could find none of its employees. He insists that by law the court cannot entrust such an assessment to a commercial company. Besides, the experts’ names are still unknown. Their findings will be announced at the Petrozavodsk City Court on 11 October 2017.”

According to the “Fontanka” newspaper, the Federal Department for Independent Forensic Assessment is registered at a residential address in St. Petersburg next to the headquarters of the Russian Guard. There is no information about the organization either on the house or on the door of the apartment. Neighbours told the reporter that “ordinary people who work at the Apraksin vegetable market” lived in this apartment.

In a telephone conversation with the correspondent of “Novaya Gazeta” in St. Petersburg, Julia Goncharova, the company’s general director, refused to name the specialists.


Yuri Dmitriev was arrested at his apartment on 13 December 2016. The Karelian historian was accused of making pornographic photographs of his adopted daughter. However, Dmitriev’s defense, as well as experts who spoke in court, believe that the pictures are a diary of the girl’s health.

Petrozavodsk City Court appointed a repeated examination of photographs of Yuri Dmitriev’s daughter on September 15. Anufriev managed to convince the court that the previous examination was not objective and professional: 9 pictures out of 114 were considered to be pornographic, but all of them were part of the girl’s diary. However, Marina Nosova satisfied the petition for the analysis of only these nine pictures from the historian’s home archive.

Anna Yarovaya
«7×7 – Horizontal Russia»