Russia transfers gravely ill inmate to hospital after Strasbourg ruling

A gravely ill inmate, Natalia Gulevich, whose kidneys and bladder recently failed was transferred on Tuesday from a pretrial detention center to a hospital after the Strasbourg Court of Human Rights issued a ruling, her lawyer, Anna Stavitskaya, said.

“Gulevich was today transferred to a hospital! The EU’s persistence [Strasbourg court ruling] and a kidney failure was necessary for this! Without it our officials believed that the individual was healthy,” Stavitskaya said on her Facebook page.

Entrepreneur Gulevich was arrested in December 2010 on embezzlement charges, after she failed to fully repay the credit she took from a private bank. In what the inmate’s lawyers call a corporate raid, the bank took over Gulevich’s company and filed a suit against the woman.

Gulevich had been insistently asking prison doctors to provide her with proper medical treatment, but to no avail. According to Russia’s new legislation, gravely ill people must not be held in pretrial detention centers.

This October, a Moscow court agreed to release the businesswoman on a hefty bail of $3 million. Lawyers for Gulevich failed to collect the money on time.

In early November, Stavitskaya filed a complaint to the Strasbourg Court demanding that her defendant receive a medical examination and treatment. Despite the fact that it usually takes the court years to consider cases and complaints, Stavitskaya managed to prove that Gulevich’s health was in great danger, and in several weeks Strasbourg issued the ruling.

Human rights activist compare Natalia Gulevich to Hermitage Capital lawyer Sergei Magnitsky and real estate agency buisneswoman Vera Trifonova who also were accused of white-collar crimes and died in pretrial detention centers after not receiving adequate medical treatment.


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