Lawyers: There is serious threat to Nikita Belykh’s life
Doctors disclosed new diagnoses at the former governor of Kirov, but the court found that his state of health allows him to stay in prison.
The lawyer of ex-Governor Nikita Belykh commented on the state of health of his client. On the eve of the trial, the issue of extending the term of his arrest was being considered and many of those present noted that Belykh looked nohow – he lost weight, grew thin, moved with a cane. As lawyer Andrey Grokhotov told Novaya Gazeta, Nikita Belykh had new severe diagnoses – damage to the brain tissue and spine.
"We doubt that he can leave the prison alive", – Grokhotov said.
According to him, doctors of the Matrosskaya Tishina prison hospital, where Belykh was examined, revealed encephalopathy of the second degree (an organic brain disease in which the brain tissue changes dystrophically, which leads to a disruption of its function). The lawyer noted that the doctors of Lefortovo did not establish this during the previous examination. The disease can be related to diabetes and high blood pressure.
The court was asked to transfer the ex-Governor to house arrest, referring to the conclusion of doctors. In addition, Belykh began to complain of headaches and pains in the spine. However, Judge Yuliya Safina extended his arrest for another three months – until June 24, 2017, having believed that his health state allows keeping the suspect in the prison.
In June last year Nikita Belykh was detained red-handed in a restaurant of retail and office center Lotte Plaza at Novy Arbat when receiving tagged 100 thousand euros. According to the investigators, this money was only a part of the bribe of 400 thousand euros, which were meant for the governor for providing protection to the two commercial structures. Lawyer Andrey Grokhotov explained that this money was intended for the Russian Military Historical Society (RVIO). According to him, the case materials feature a record of negotiations in the restaurant, where they discussed the issue of financing the RVIO. However, Vladislav Kononov, the Executive Director of the society, said that no donations had ever received from Nikita Belykh.
Furthermore, a new criminal case has been brought against Belykh under part 6 of Art. 290 of the Criminal Code (Bribe-Taking on an especially large scale). Its details are not disclosed. It is known that both cases were combined into one proceeding. At the same time, the investigators suggested Nikita Belykh concluding a pre-trial agreement. The lawyer claims that this can mean that the case is falling apart and they are trying to strengthen it with new episodes. The ex-Governor still does not plead guilty.
According to the Russian MIA’s spokesperson, Maria Zakharova, the detention of Russian woman Maria Butina in the US was specifically timed to coincide with the summit of Putin and Trump in order to minimize the effect of the presidents’ meeting.