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Judge Ruled Against Motion by Opposition Youth Activist Tigran Araqelyan’s Attorney

The trial of opposition youth activists Tigran Araqelyan, Sargis Gevorgyan, David Kiramijyan and Artak Karapetyan resumed today at the Court of General Jurisdiction of Kentron and Nork Marash Administrative Districts of Yerevan.

Recall, on Aug. 9, seven Armenian National Congress (HAK) youth, among them those named above, were detained after an incident with police near Yerevan’s Swan Lake. The next day they were arrested, while four — Areg and Vahagn Gevorgyan, David Kiramijyan and Sahak Muradyan — were released on Aug. 12 and then two more — Artak Karapetyan and Sargis Gevorgyan — were released later. The only one still detained was Tigran Araqelyan.

During today’s trial, Stepan Voskanyan, the attorney representing Sargis Gevorgyan, David Kiramijyan and Artak Karapetyan, put forth a motion to quash the criminal case against his clients and stop the criminal persecution since the investigation was not objective, while the “unlawful activities” carried out by police on the day of the incident were disguised in the case and “unfounded accusations” against his clients were made.

Furthermore, the attorney mentioned in his motion that his clients were subjected to a beating by a group of police officers — they were hit while not only in the process of being detained, but also at the police station.

The attorney added that on the day of the incident, the number of officers was great and this was done on purpose, because of the young men’s political views.

Tigran Araqelyan motioned for this motion to also extend to him, to which no one objected. The judge postponed making a decision on this motion.

Then Tigran Araqelyan’s attorney, Vahe Grigoryan, motioned to change the precautionary measure against his client or that he be released on bail. Grigoryan also noted that there are insufficient grounds for keeping Araqelyan in prison and the prosecution cannot cite one fact that would prove that his client by being free might block the investigation or hide from investigators.

The prosecution, however, noted that on the day of the incident, in the video in their possession, Tigran Araqelyan can be seen with a bloody shirt, then later he can be seen topless, then finally with a clean shirt on. And this the prosecutor (Martirosyan) provided as grounds that Araqelayn might influence his friends and impede the investigation. In addition, the prosecutor noted that there’s a part of this case that’s been separated. The attorney asked what this has to do with the separated part and added, that which the prosecutor is saying is not noted anywhere. The prosecutor didn’t justify his objection.

To make a decision on the motion, Judge Gagik Poghosyan spent two hours in the consultation room, then declared a half-hour recess. After the recess, the judge ruled against the motion. Then the first victim was examined. The next court date will take place on Jan. 24, 2012, at 2 pm.