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Justice Ministry: ECHR ruling in ex-Yukos official's case gives convict right to appeal

The European Court of Human Rights on Tuesday pronounced its verdict on a second complaint filed by Aleksey Pichugin
Aleksey Pichugin Yuri Mashkov/TASS
Aleksey Pichugin
© Yuri Mashkov/TASS

MOSCOW, June 6. /TASS/. The Strasbourg Court’s ruling in the case of Aleksey Pichugin, former security chief of the oil major Yukos, who is serving a life term, does not overturn the sentence but gives him a chance to appeal, the Russian Justice Ministry has said.

The European Court of Human Rights on Tuesday pronounced its verdict on a second complaint filed by Pichugin to declare that items one and two of article six of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms were violated when the plaintiff was under investigation.

"The European Court, guided by the principle of common sense and fairness of demand and having studied the presented documentary evidence, considerably lowered the requested compensations to award the plaintiff 7,800 euros in compensation for moral damages and another 7,470 euros in compensation for judicial expenses," the Justice Ministry said.

The ECHR’s decision does not entail automatic and unconditional cancellation of the sentence passed in the second case against the plaintiff but merely serves as a reason for asking Russia’s Supreme Court for a revision of the case under article 49 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. The Justice Ministry said the ECHR’s verdicts containing similar conclusions were standard practice characteristic of almost all EU member countries. The ministry said nothing about its intention to protest the ECHR ruling.


On August 6, 2007 the Moscow City Court sentenced Pichugin to life imprisonment for three murders and four attempted murders, including the killing of Nefteyugansk Mayor Vladimir Petukhov in 1998 and also of Moscow businesswoman Valentina Korneyeva and two failed attempts on the life of businessman Yevgeny Rybin. On January 31, 2008 the Supreme Court upheld the verdict.

In 2005, Pichugin was sentenced to 20 years in jail for masterminding the killing of the entrepreneurial couple - Olga and Sergey Gorin, and also an attempt on the life of Rosprom company manager Viktor Kolesov and chief of the Moscow Mayor’s Office spokeswoman Olga Kostina.