Court to consider arrest of wrestler who killed student

MOSCOW, August 24 (Itar-Tass) — Moscow’s Zamoskvorechye court on Wednesday will hold repeat review of the investigator’s petition to arrest Mixed Martial Arts world champion Rasul Mirzayev, who delivered a fatal blow to student Ivan Agafonov, 19, earlier this month.

The hearing is scheduled for 15:00, Moscow time.

On Monday, the court released Mirzayev on a 5-million-rouble bail. The money was to have transferred to the court’s deposit account by the end of the working day on August 25. Prosecutors protested Mirzayev’s release and the Moscow City Court overturned the bail ruling on Tuesday.

Mirzayev’s case will be reviewed by a new Zamoskvorechye court judge.

Moscow Court spokeswoman Anna Usachyova said the Zamoskvoretsky court “took a superficial approach to reviewing the materials, by not examining the possibility of Mirzayev’s going abroad, and the conflicting information about the place of his residence.”

The Moscow City Court’s criminal panel noted that the Zamoskvoretsky court had considered the materials on Mirzayev in violation of the Criminal-Procedural Code (UPK). Specifically, the district court was guided by Article 109, which regulates extension of measure of restraint, not its selection.

Also, the court’s conclusions on Mirzayev’s cooperating with the investigators and his turning himself in are premature, Usachyova said.

On Tuesday, prosecutor Anna Bogdashkina asked the court to overturn the bail ruling and sent the petition demanding his arrest for repeat review.

“The court, when explaining the reasons behind granting bail to the suspect, cited a lack of evidence showing the causal relationship between Mirzayev’s actions and the consequences; but it only was supposed to give its opinion regarding the gravity of the offence and the possibility that the suspect might escape,” the prosecutor said.

She also said the Zamoskvoretsky court did not take into account a number of circumstances that warrant Mirzayev’s arrest, namely that he might escape or put pressure on witnesses.

Substantiating the version that Mirzayev might escape, Bogdashkina repeated the investigator’s argument: the athlete has a foreign travel passport and a contract with a U.S. company. “Mirzayev can also put pressure on witnesses and force them into giving false testimony or not testifying,” she added.

“The court failed to take into account the information on Mirzayev’ personality. Having unarmed combat skills and clear advantage over the victim, he used his skills,” Bogdashkina said.

Investigator Yevgeniya Shaferova supported her position.

The incident occurred in Brodnikov Pereulok in central Moscow on August 13. Student Ivan Agafonov was rushed to hospital and died several days later without regaining consciousness. The investigators learned from media reports that Mirzayev was the attacker.

Mirzayev’s lawyers said the student had died not from the blow but because he hit his head on the asphalt as he fell. In that event, the charges should be changed from malicious infliction of grave harm to health resulting in negligent death (which envisions up to 15 years in prison) to causing negligent death which is punished by up to two years in jail.

The forensic examination into the cause of Agafonov’s death is not finished yet.

The all-Russia Sambo Federation disqualified Rasul Mirzayev on Tuesday.

“Athlete Rasul Mirzayev has been disqualified by decision of the all-Russia Sambo Federation and withdrawn from training for the world combat sambo championship in Vilnius on November 10-14,” the Federation said.

A law-enforcement source told Tass on Tuesday that Agafonov was a suspect in the criminal case over a lottery club raid.

“Agafonov was a robbery case suspect. He’s suspected of abetting the raid on a lottery club in north-western Moscow last year. A criminal case against him was opened under Article 162 (“robber”),” the police officer said.

Agafonov was on recognizance, unlike other suspects, according to police.

“Agafonov was dismissed from college at his own request, but in actual fact, the college administration insisted on it,” he added.

On Wednesday, a law-enforcement source said Ivan Agafonov’s parents might be offered state protection in case of real threat to their life.

It is up to the investigators to include them in the state protection program, the source said.

“The parents of deceased Ivan Agafonov may be provided state protection in case of real threat to their life. A person can request state protection if there is a real threat to his life or a possibility of such threat,” he noted.

As many as eight security measures may be implemented: from giving means of personal protection to the operation to change place or residence and personal data. It is up to the police officer handling state protection issues which to choose.

“The decision on providing state protection is to be made within three days after the relevant resolution by the investigator,” police said.


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