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Appeals Court Upholds Activist’s 9-Year Jail Sentence

Armenia’s Criminal Court of Appeal upheld on Monday a lower court’s September 15 ruling sentencing Hayk Kyureghyan to nine years in prison for firing an air pistol in the direction of police in summer 2014. Kyureghyan had been found guilty of hooliganism and committing violence against a representative of the authorities.

Kyureghyan, who reacted to the verdict with applause, had demanded at the start of the trial acquittal from the court. Presiding Judge Sergey Chichoyan had remarked that the defendant had also included other requirements in his appeal, namely that the “sentence is too harsh;” the defendant, however, repeated that his only demand was to be acquitted. 

"Long live Armenia that will come tomorrow!"


The court found that Kyureghyan failed to provide new evidence in his favor and decided to let the 9-year sentence stand. 

Recall, at the start of the June 12 hearing in the case of Shant Harutyunyan and his friends, Kyureghyan climbed onto a car outside the courthouse and shot rounds from an air pistol in the police's direction, attempting, he said, to prevent "an erroneous judgment on Shant."

Kyureghyan informed head of a group of civil society members monitoring conditions in Armenian prisons and detention centers Hasmik Sahakyan, who had come to visit him at the Erebuni temporary detention center, that he was ill-treated during and after the arrest.