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    Political Prisoner Alexey Pichugin Vanished from the Lefortovo Prison | 27 Mar 2017

    Alla Pichugina with a letter to Vladimir Putin and a photo on which she is with her son. Victoria Odissonova  Novaya GazetaAlexey Pichugin, ex-YUKOS Company official recently declared political prisoner by Memorial Center for Human Rights (Moscow) had disappeared from the Lefortovo Investigation Detention Center. This information had been confirmed by Mrs. Alla Nikolayevna Pichugina, his mother, who in turn quoted the statement by his lawyer Xenia Kostromina.

    His lawyers visited their client only a week ago, yet they had given no notice about the possible transfer.

    Neither relatives, nor lawyers have no information regarding the place the convict was transferred to, whether it was the Black Dolphin (Federal Correctional Center Prison Camp 6) prison for life convicts in Sol-Iletsk, Orenburg Region, where he had already spent eight years, or some another place.

    Alexey Pichugin had been held in Lefortovo Prison, Moscow, since July 2016 after he had been transported there supposedly to extort from him evidence against ex-CEO of YUKOS Mikhail Khodorkovsky within the framework of so-called third YUKOS case concerning the plotting of murder of Vladimir Petukhov, then Mayor of Nefteyugansk.

    Alla Pichugina herself along with her younger son ANdrey Pichugin, had been subjected to questioning and search beforehand; the latter had been consequently forced to leave Russia.

    Alexey Pichugin had been questioned only once, as a witness, on July 13, 2016, by Mikhail Savitsky, FSB Investigator, notorious for his participation in resonant «terrorism-related» cases. For instance, the case of Oleg Sentsov, Ukrainian director declared political prisoner as well. Pichugin refused to give any evidence quoting the Article 51 of the Constitution which provides for the possibility not to testify against oneself or ones relatives.

    No other investigative procedures involving Alexey Pichugin had taken place since then.

    On October 19 2016 Alla Pichugina had addressed Vladimir Putin via Novaya Gazeta urging him to pardon her son.

    «My son is only guilty of one fact of his biography, when he had worked for YUKOS. He had long ago proved everything by his noble and righteous behavior»,  she wrote.

    Dmitry Peskov, Putin’s spokesman had confirmed that Kremlin is aware of this letter the very same day.

    Shortly thereafter it was revealed that Mrs. Pichuginas letter had been sent to the Office of Moscow Mayor Serguey Sobianin who serves as the Head of the Commission for Pardons and Paroles of Moscow, which was the region where Pichugin has been held at the moment.

    Alla Pichugina had received the official response (the document is in possession of HRO.org) signed by Alexander Chistyakov, Vice-Chairman of the Commission for Pardons and Paroles in Moscow.

    The document states that the convict should himself place a written motion of pardon addressed to the president; «refusal to transfer the motion via respective administrative channel shall not be accepted». Therefore, it is recommended to Pichugin «to write a motion of pardon and request the Chief Warden of the prison camp to prepare all the indispensable documentation».

    The HRO.org shall keep an eye on the subject.


    Translated by Alexey Uelsky

  • 14 years behind bars without fair trial. What did Strasbourg rule in the case of Pichugin?
  • Zoya Svetova: Who is it, Mikhail Savitsky, conducting an interrogation of Aleksey Pichugin
  • Alexey Pichugin: «I wrote a motion to have a visit from my mother»
  • Statement of Igor Viacheslavovuch Sutyagin
  • Mikhail Khodorkovsky: «An innnocent man, Alexey Pichugin, is still behind bars»
  • The European Court of Human Rights. CASE OF PICHUGIN v. RUSSIA. Judgment
  • Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger about Alexey Pichugin case
  • Leonid Nevzlins interview about the «case»
  • The «Amnesty International» is anxious about Alexey Pichugins condition

  • Trial of vengeance

  • Journalist Valeriy Shiryaev on the first case of Aleksey Pichugin in his book «Trial of vengeance. The first victim of the YUKOS case»