MOSCOW (TASS): The Russian Supreme Court on Wednesday sent the case of nationalists Nikita Tikhonov and Yevgenia Khasis, convicted of the 2009 murder of lawyer Stanislav Markelov and journalist Anastasia Baburova, for review to the court of appeal. Lawyer Dmitry Agranovsky told TASS about this.
“The Presidium of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation, in accordance with the decision of the ECHR, resumed the proceedings in the Tikhonov and Khasis case, canceled the cassation ruling. The case has been sent for a new consideration to the appellate instance,” the lawyer said.
The preventive measure for Tikhonov and Khasis in the form of detention was extended until March 8, 2022. The re-appeal hearing of the case will take place in the Supreme Court.
Lawyer Agranovsky explained that the decision of the Supreme Court was made in connection with an unequivocal indication of the need to cancel the sentence due to pressure on the jury. “We expected the verdict to be canceled as a whole and the case was sent to the first instance, but the presidium limited itself to sending it to the appellate instance. He recalled that the jury’s guilty verdict was passed with a minimum margin of seven votes to five and only after one of the members of the jury left the jury at the final stage of the trial. “We believe that the evidence base in the case is very weak, and this affected the jury’s verdict and forced the authorities to apply the measures of pressure that were established by the ECHR,” the lawyer said.
In February of this year, the European Court found that the Russian court violated Article 6 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms when it was considering the case of Tikhonov and Khasis. According to the Strasbourg court, the jury was not impartial when it convicted the nationalists. At the same time, the ECHR did not award monetary compensation to Tikhonov and Khasis.
Stanislav Markelov and Anastasia Baburova were shot dead on Prechistenka on January 19, 2009. Nikita Tikhonov, one of the founders of the Russkiy Obraz magazine, and Evgenia Khasis, an activist of the Russkiy Verdict organization, were found guilty of their murder. Tikhonov was sentenced to life imprisonment, Khasis – to 18 years in prison. Subsequently, Tikhonov confessed that he was one of the leaders of the so-called Fighting Organization of Russian Nationalists and took part in a series of murders motivated by ideological and racial hatred.