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Trial opens against Petersburg Skinheads accused of killing 5 year-old girl


On Wednesday, in the St. Petersburg city court, began a lawsuit involving an ethnically motivated murder. Seven skinheads, between 16 and 19 years old, are the accused. As some of the accused are still minors, the legal proceeding will be conducted behind closed doors. Neither journalists nor Human Rights activists are permitted to enter the courtroom. Only the jury will listen to the trial.

The young people are charged for participation in a murder that took place on September 21st last year. Two young Gipsy women with a 5-year-old girl and a 7-year-old girl were returning to their camp in the evening, which was set up on a vacant spot close to the railway station Dachnoe in the outskirts of St. Petersburg.

It was at their camp where a group of young men attacked them. The Gipsy women were beaten with metal rods, chains and fittings, and even hatchets and butterfly knives were used. A few witnesses of the cruel beating are, after almost a year, still able to identify the attackers.

The Gipsy women were delivered to hospital with serious injuries. The doctors diagnosed the five-year-old Nilufar Sangboeva with a basal skull fracture and a fractures of ribs. She died in hospital without regaining consciousness again. At the same day the Office of Public Prosecutor instituted criminal proceedings classified as murder, the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the Administration of Internal Affairs of the Moscow region was charged with the investigation.

A few days later the first suspects were arrested: the 17-year-old Dmitriy Danilov, Vitaliy Serebryakov whos the same age and the 16-year-old Dmitriy Chayretdinov. One teenager was released; he had an alibi.

Hereon the investigation came to a standstill. The witnesses affirm that along with the shouting Beat the khachi! (this word actually means Armenian but is used as a very negative term for all ethnic groups that are not Russian) Russia for Russians! a dozen skinheads attacked the women.

But the police was not able to find the other. Only after half a year all of the offenders got cached. They were arrested in the course of another investigation, the murder case of Khursheda Sultanova. Remind the nine-year-old Tajik girl was beaten to death in front a house at Boitsova 9 in February this year, when she returned home from the skating rink with her father Yusuf and her cousin Alabir.

All of the arrested turned out to be members of extremist groupings. With unconcealed pride they reckoned themselves skinheads, but they refuse to admit, that they committed the crime because of racial intolerance.

They insist, that they decided to beat the Gipsy because they just are hooligans and out of boredom. They say the camp rendered tribute for staying there and wanted to show them what happens when one doesnt listen to his landlord.

The most fanatic among them openly state that they are ready to start to prune our country of Gipsy. The witnesses only extremely reluctantly agreed to depose, obviously because they fear the revenge from the direction of the skinheads. The yesterdays sitting of the court showed that these anxieties are not groundless. At the courts entrance journalists met companions in arms and friends of the accused. They laughed and unambiguously cracked a joke about the journalists, whom they gazed at arrogantly.

If the accused will be proved guilty, they are threatened with up to 15 years deprivation of liberty. Still there are only a few in St. Petersburg who think that the prosecutor will stay on his national course. The case of the Tajik Gipsy is not the first lawsuit dealing with aggression because of racial intolerance. At the Leninskij district court the case of the Shults-88 group was carried out. Six young people, only two of them had full legal age, were accused of kindling ethnic and racial enmity and founding an extremist community, along with public slogans calling for violent alteration of the constitution of the Russian Federation. One of the organizers of Shults Sergei Vostroknutov already got preventive punishment custody, which didnt allow him to leave his place.



Source: Izvestia

1993-2003
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