European Court of Human Rights urgently requests information from Russian government about medical treatment of Margarita Charykova in pre-trial detention centre

2 April 2013 

Source: (info)
The European Court of Human Rights has asked the Russian government to provide information by 2 April 2013 about the medical condition of Margarita Charykova, 25, who is being held in Pre-Trial Detention Center No. 4 in Moscow. Lawyer Svetlana Sidorkina, who, at the request of the Agora Human Rights Association, is representing the interests of Margarita Charykova, was informed of this news by Registrar of the Court’s First Section, Søren Nielsen.

"It has now become clear why there has been such a frantic rush to provide medical assistance to Margarita over the last few days," says lawyer Sidorkina. "In the pre-trial detention centre she is undergoing medical examinations practically on a daily basis, all recorded on video. They are even taking her temperature now, and the whole procedure is filmed. Yesterday Investigator at Department 3 of the Moscow Directorate of the Federal Drug Control Service Vyacheslav Sagitov was supposed to bring final charges against Charykova. However, he did not do so, because he was urgently summoned to the Federal Drug Control Service, I presume to give an account of the measures he is undertaking in Margarita's case."

Meanwhile, on 4 April at 2:00 pm the Savyolovsky District Court of Moscow will consider the investigators' previously filed motion to extend the detention in custody of Margarita Charykova.

Previously, Leonid Petrov, a doctor with 25 years' experience, forensic medical expert of the highest category, PhD and Associate Professor of Forensic Medicine and Jurisprudence at St. Petersburg State Medical University, had stated that the medical treatment at the Matrosskaya Tishina pre-trial detention centre was proving ineffective and that Margarita Charykova needed to be hospitalised. Before that, the young woman had been discharged from the hospital at the Matrosskaya Tishina Pre-Trial Detention Centre No. 1 and transferred back to the Pechatniki Pre-Trial Detention Centre No. 6.

The doctor concluded: "For an examination and subsequent treatment which fully conform to the relevant standards, Margarita Charykova needs to be hospitalised in a clinic which provides coloproctology medical care."

In March an urgent appeal was sent to the European Court of Human Rights to immediately release Margarita Charykova, 24, from detention, because her health and life were in danger. The disabled woman, who was born missing a vital part of the digestive system (the straight intestine), is being held in a pre-trial detention centre. Lawyer Sidorkina has requested the ECHR to immediately release Charykova and force Russia to conduct a medical examination to establish that she has a serious illness that means she should not be kept in detention.

The young woman's mother Erika Kaminskaya said that her daughter was arrested on 11 December 2012 in Moscow by staff from the Federal Service for Drug Control, who confiscated the drug Piracetam mixed with a homemade psychotropic amphetamine stimulant. She said that after numerous operations Margarita used the medicine independently as a painkiller, since she had suffered from terrible pain since birth.

On 12 December 2012 Margarita Charykova was charged with "preparing to sell narcotic drugs, psychotropic or similar substances" (Article 30, Section 1 & Article 228, Section 1, para 'G', of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation). On 15 December, at the request of the investigators, the court ordered that she be remanded in custody and on the same day she was taken to the Pechatniki pre-trial detention centre.