“Andrias Ghukasyan did not commit the crime attributed to him." Lawyer
The Court of Appeal will examine and make a decision about changing the measure of restraint of Andrias Ghukasyan detained for the case of Sari Tagh, for which the lawyer filed an appeal.

A press conference was held at Media Center concerning this issue in which Lusine Sahakyan, Andrias Ghukasyan’s attorney, Architecture Anahit Tarkhanyan, Andrias Ghukasyan’s wife and Actress Tamar Hovhannisyan took part.

Andrias Ghukasyan is charged with organizing mass disturbances under Article 225 Part 1 of the Criminal Code.

“It is clear that Andrias Ghukasyan did not commit the crime and this case is different from other ordinary criminal cases the fact that the actions of these politicians were actually in the public eye. That was even broadcasted live and everyone knows what actions were performed, particularly in Sari Tagh and Liberty Square. But Andrias Ghukasyan and other politicians are accused of the fact that they made calls at Liberty Square aiming at inciting public unrest, particularly they took people via march not to Khorenatsi street, but to Sari Tagh and performed certain actions, leading to riots. According to the indictment, violence was used against the police,” Sahakyan said.

She emphasized that what happened in Sari Tagh cannot be considered mass disorder.

“It was an ordinary peaceful assembly, and there was an interference by the police and people had been subjected to severe beatings, there was a use of special measures against people, property was destroyed, and these are actions, of which the police is in charge," Sahakyan said referring to the events of July 29.

A lawyer considers Andreas Ghukasyan’s arrest an apparent political persecution against him.

“And it's for the fact that Andrias not only tried to have his own opinion, but also express it. And he wanted to fight for the rights of others, he simply will not tolerate the violation of human rights, tried to interfere in it, express an opinion, using his right to freedom of speech and participating in assemblies. This is an obvious interference of the right to freedom of speech and freedom of assembly stipulated by the 10th and 11th articles of the Convention, and we will be persistent, if this issue is not solved in Armenia, and I am confident it will not, the European Court should recognize this violation. Detention is an interference of his right of freedom by Article 5of the Convention," Sahakyan said.

She added that no material or evidence is presented which can prove that Andrias Ghukasyan committed the crime attributed to him.

“There is no reason to arrest him, because there was no risk of absconding. He was arrested from his house, and there was no action that could prove the fact that he is hiding from the investigation. We appealed to the court to test the legality of his arrest and appealed to the Court of Appeal to challenge the lawfulness of his detention, which was initially illegal. Two appeals are in one pending and  it will be examined at the Court of Appeal tomorrow," the attorney said.

As we know, the preventive measures of two politicians - Heritage Party spokesman David Sanasaryan and Deputy President of Heritage Party Armen Martirosyan, was changed and they were released on bail.

Lusine Sahakyan believes that such a decision should be made by the Court of Appeal for Andrias Ghukasyan as well, the charges are the same as in the case of the politicians, only the names have been changed.
“This is not a full legal solution, but this is the solution that people will not be deprived of their liberty and will try to defend their rights in freedom," Sahakyan added.

Tarkhanyan said that Andrias Ghukasyan should be released.

“Andrias should be released without any bail, his being a good person, being a good citizen should be taken into account. It is very difficult to imagine that being a man who headed an organization for many years that designed a monument for the fallen police officers in Voskepar, can organize mass disturbances, or try to approach the police in a different way. The court must take into account its general character, the essence of a person, and all of his recent speeches, which are evidence of his fundamental approach, and they are all within the constitutional and legal framework. It must be a legal decision, "said Tarkhanyan.

Tamar Hovhannisyan considered the accusations to be false.

"They are simply baked in the same words for everyone, just the names are changed. It cannot be called justice, justice is when both sides are examined. There were people who did not wear policemen’s uniform, they were in civilian clothes, they were there to provoke. Andrias Ghukasyan being so aware of the law, how could he hit the police with stones? Charges have no relation to what is propagated and will be propagated by Andrias. He knows what civil disobedience is, he knows very well that it is not taking the stones and throwing at the police. They should be free because they are innocent, and there are many criminals, who must fill the prisons,» she said.

Lilit Arakelyan, editor/events coordinator at “Media Center”

To contact the author please send an email to lilitarakelyan@pjc.am.

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