MOSCOW, June 11. /TASS/. Chairman of the Russian Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights Mikhail Fedotov expected the release of Meduza media outlet journalist Ivan Golunov and is hoping that an investigation will be conducted into the details of the criminal case against him.
"I can only say thing, I am very happy. I have been expecting this result and am hoping that this is far from being over," Fedotov told TASS.
In the commentary published in the Council’s official website, Fedotov called the dismissal of the criminal case against Golunov "a joint victory of the civil society, supervision agencies, common sense and law." At the same time, he pointed out that "those guilty of this abuse of law should face trial."
Earlier on Tuesday, Russian Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev said that the criminal case against journalist Ivan Golunov on suspicion of drug trafficking had been dismissed "in view of the failure to prove his participation in the crime." All charges have been dropped, and he will be released from house arrest on June 11. The materials of the internal probe were referred from the Internal Ministry’s security division to the Investigative Committee to review the legitimacy of the actions by the police officers, who had apprehended Golunov. The officers have been suspended.
Ivan Golunov was taken into custody on June 6. According to the Internal Ministry’s main Moscow branch, Golunov was carrying four grams of mephedrone, a synthetic stimulant drug, while five grams of cocaine were found during a search of his rented apartment. Subsequently, he was charged with drug dealing, whereupon Moscow’s Nikulinsky District Court placed the journalist under house arrest. Golunov denied all the accusations from the beginning, his defense attorney believed that the prohibited substances had been planted.