Serbsky Institute dismisses charges. Next hearing, 14 March

Russia’s Serbsky Institute has rejected any grounds for the charges against YURY DMITRIEV, renowned historian and Head of the Karelia branch of the Memorial Society. Even an institute notorious for its use of punitive psychiatry in Soviet times was not willing to take part in the politically motivated attempt to imprison Dmitriev for up to 15 years and stated clearly that the historian “is not a paedophile”.  The result comes after Dmitriev spent 13 months in detention on charges that aroused concern far beyond his native Karelia.

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Serbsky verdict: Dmitriev sane, photos not pornographic

At today’s long-awaited court hearing, the first since YURY DMITRIEV returned from Moscow and was released from custody, the findings of the Serbsky Institute were made public: the court had required the institute to assess Dmitriev’s mental state and the status of the photographs he took of his foster daughter Natasha.

Dmitriev arrives for Feb 2018 hearing

Dmitriev arrives for court hearing

The specialists at the Serbsky Institute in Moscow found that Dmitriev is in his right mind and does not require in-patient treatment at any psychiatric institution. They also concurred with the experts who reported to the Petrozavodsk City Court on 27 December 2017 that there was no element of pornography in the nine photos cited by the prosecution as evidence of abuse.

This would seem to demolish emphatically the prosecution case. There are no charges to be answered and, failing a term of imprisonment, neither can there be any justiciation for shutting the historian away for an indefinite period of treatment  in a psychiatric hospital.

It also raises the hope that, after over a year’s separation and lack of any contact, Dmitriev will be re-united with Natasha, his foster daughter.

Little about this case has been straightforward, however. Victor Anufriev, Dmitriev’s defence attorney, who has successfully guided the trial proceedings towards this resolution, counsels caution. Until Dmitriev has been acquitted, and that verdict confirmed by a higher court (the prosecution seem almost certain to appeal against such an outcome) the trial is by no means over.

John Crowfoot
27 February 2018

Psychiatric examination completed, results not known

The Serbsky Institute in Moscow has completed its assessment of Yury Dmitriev and on 19 January 2018 he was transferred to the city’s Butyrka Prison, says his defence attorney Victor Anufriev.

The official results of the investigation of Dmitriev’s psychological, sexual and psychiatric condition are not known. His attorney says that the assessment has not yet been signed and it would be improper to draw any conclusions.  Continue reading

Letters and Parcels

YURY DMITRIEV is already at the Serbsky Centre in Moscow. Several people, including his son, have been quick to take him a food parcel there — good for him and his morale, and helpful in making friends inside.

food parcel for Dmitriev (Serbsky Institute)

What Victoria Ivleva took Dmitriev

Photojournalist Victoria Ivleva took a lemon, mandarins, butter, toilet paper, cigarettes, cheese, sugar, speck, biscuits, salami and sweets.

Some were worried that letters sent to Petrozavodsk or cards (one from Botswana in southern Africa!) would not now reach Yury Alexeyevich. His daughter Katerina Klodt put their minds at rest.

Yesterday, she went to Detention Centre No 1 in Petrozavodsk where her father spent the last year and was given a bag full of undelivered mail. When she got home, she promptly took a photo and posted it online …

Letters and cards to Yury Dmitriev

Prosecutor wants Dmitriev locked up in a madhouse

After the court-appointed assessment did not find child pornography in any of the photographs in the Dmitriev case, the prosecution, represented by YELENA ASKEROVA, Petrozavodsk city prosecutor, petitioned for a new assessment to be made of the photos of YURY DMITRIEV’s foster daughter.

Furthermore, Ms Askerova once again recommended that the court approach a private firm, not a State expert organisation.

She did not stop there, however.  Continue reading

Prosecution turns to punitive psychiatry as trial collapses

A second expert assessment has effectively overturned the entire case against Yury Dmitriev, renowned Russian historian and head of the Karelia branch of Memorial.

There is no immediate sign that this judicial travesty is ending, with the prosecutor immediately demanding yet another assessment of the photos which experts found no pornographic content in, and that Dmitriev be placed for ‘tests’ in a psychiatric institution.  The court agreed to both, however did reject the prosecutor’s application for a further three months in detention.  Whether Dmitriev will be released on 28 January 2018, his 62nd birthday, remains to be seen, given the clear attempts underway to save the prosecution.  Continue reading

Dmitriev to be released on 28 January 2018

The historian and head of the Memorial Society in Karelia, YURY DMITRIEV, will be released from the Detention Centre in Petrozavodsk on Sunday, 28 January 2018, after spending more than a year there, remanded in custody.

On Wednesday, 27 December 2017, the Petrozavodsk City Court decided to change the measure of restraint from detention in custody to the detainee’s agreement not to leave the country, his defence attorney VICTOR ANUFRIEV told 7×7.

Meanwhile, the Petrozavodsk prosecutor’s office has petitioned for a third assessment to be made of the photographs taken of Dmitriev’s adopted daughter. The historian will be subjected to an in-patient psychiatric examination. Both the new assessment of the photographs and the psychiatric examination of Yury Dmitriev will take place in Moscow, as defence attorney Anufriev has insisted, at the Serbsky Research Institute.

7×7 – Horizontal Russia
27 December 2017

New experts

The new experts in the Dmitriev case come from a private firm without office or staff. On 15 September the Petrozavodsk City Court scheduled a new examination of the photographs in the Dmitriev case. The Karelian historian is accused of making pornography and sexually abusing his adopted daughter Natasha.
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