Court turns down lawyer’s petition

On Thursday 31 October 2019, the Petrozavodsk City Court turned down a petition by Yury DMITRIEV’S lawyer for a specialist assessment of the case materials to be repeated. At his second trial, Dmitriev stands accused of “violent acts of a sexual nature against an under-age victim”.

His defence lawyer Victor Anufriev submitted the petition 4 ½ months ago, but Judge Alexander Merkov only examined it on 31 October. According to Anufriev, the court did not consider it necessary to request an additional assessment of the case materials.

At the same hearing, the court examined Anatoly Razumov, director of the Restored Names Centre at the National Library in St Petersburg.

Dmitriev, 31 Oct 2019 (7x7)

Yury Dmitriev being led into court, 31 Octobeer 2019

“It’s not up to me to judge how things went. I answered the questions and believe that Judge Merkov behaved with dignity. I answered the best I could,” Razumov told 7×7. The case is being examined behind closed doors and its participants, therefore, cannot repeat any details.

For many years, Yury Dmitriev has been studying the arrests and executions under Stalin and searching for the names of those shot and the places where they were buried. He took part in the expedition seeking the lost Solovki transport and was one of those who, in July 1997, discovered the killing ground and burial site at Sandormokh.


Dmitriev was first arrested on 13 December 2016 and accused of making pornographic images of his adopted daughter. In April 2018 the Petrozavodsk City Court acquitted him, but in June that year the decision was annulled by the Supreme Court of Karelia.

The second time he was arrested on 27 June 2018 and charged with “violent acts of a sexual nature against an under-age victim”. At his defence lawyer Víctor Anufriev’s request, the court combined the two cases into one.

Sergei Markelov, 7×7 news website,
31 October 2019