Health condition of anti-fascist Alexei Olesinov, who is held at
Moscow's Medvedkovo pre-trial detention centre as a suspect in the
"Moscow antifa case" for allegedly participating in a brawl, has sharply
deteriorated. Independent expert evaluation, conducted by the Pavlov
State Medical University in St Petersburg, confirmed that Olesinov risks
becoming permanently disabled.
However, the pre-trial detention centre
administration has opposed bringing outside doctors to treat him.
Opposition activists say that should Olesinov's health be significantly
damaged, active protests by radical-left youth may ensue.
As [Russian business newspaper] RBK Daily reported earlier, at the
moment in Moscow and other Russian cities a series of criminal cases
concerning brawls between ultra-left and ultra-right youths are being
investigated. During investigative actions, law-enforcement officers
repeatedly said that they want to prove via a court procedure the
existence of the antifa extremist community, which has violent actions
against nationalists as its purpose. Law-enforcers consider Alexei
Olesinov, also known as Shkobar, to be one of the leaders of the antifa.
As Olesinov's lawyer Svetlana Sidorkina told RBK Daily, the health of
her client has been steadily deteriorating. Sometimes he loses his
bearings, cannot remember where he's at, and depression suddenly
replaces euphoria. Doctors suspect that Olesinov may suffer from
Olesinov also suffers from strong, painful coughing. A chest X-ray made
at the pre-trial detention centre showed a blackening in the lung, which
may indicate tuberculosis. Sidorkina said that in the eight months her
client spent in pre-trial detention, investigators only spoke to him once.
Independent expert evaluation, conducted by the Pavlov State Medical
University in St Petersburg, had indicated that Olesinov may become
permanently disabled, and requires serious check-up. As outside medics
are not allowed to visit pre-trial detention centres, the expert
evaluation was conducted on the basis of Olesinov's pre-detention health
record and his responses to questions drawn up by doctors.
Sidorkina said that she was informed by pre-trial detention centre's
administration that her client can be provided with all required medical
services at Medvedkovo. The dispute between the lawyer and the prison
administration is to be heard by a court in early December.
Federal Penal Service press service said they are unable to comment on
the quality of medical services provided to those held at Medvedkovo
pre-trial detention centre. Member of the Public Supervisory Committee
(ONK) Anna Karetnikova told RBK Daily that Moscow's only fully
functional prison hospital is located at the Matrosskaya Tishina
pre-trial detention centre, and forwarding detainees there from other
isolators often becomes a problem. Another ONK member, Maria Kannabikh,
said that while Medvedkovo is generally considered to be one of Moscow's
best pre-trial detention centres, all prison administrations are often
unwilling to let suspects be examined by outside medics, as that may be
complicated by the need to organise escorting of detainees.
Member of the opposition Coordination Council Alexei Gaskarov told RBK
Daily that Olesinov is indeed well-known in the anti-fascist community.
Thus, should he become disabled during his pre-trial imprisonment, when
he was not even found guilty by a court, very radical protests may
ensue, Gaskarov said.
This is the second criminal case concerning Olesinov. When he was first
arrested in 2008 [also for brawling with nationalists outside a Moscow
club], radical protesters torched several cars and buildings belonging
to police and other state bodies, and posted videos on-line.
By Alexander Litoy, RBK Daily newspaper website, Nov. 20, 2012