Ivan Pavlov: “So you see in civil law there is no adversarial system, nor equality of arms either”

posted 4 May 2015, 12:36 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 4 May 2015, 12:52 ]
30 April 2015

Source: HRO.org (info
On 29 April 2015 the Supreme Court ‘confirmed the lawfulness’ of the decision to annul the residence permit of US citizen Jennifer Gaspar, a well-known public figure and wife of Ivan Pavlov, a lawyer who for many years has been chair of the board of the St Petersburg non-profit the Freedom of Information Foundation, who announced the fact on his Facebook page.

The Court had earlier ruled that the FSB must provide a copy of the secret decision which formed the basis for the ruling of the Federal Migration Service to annul Jennifer Gaspar’s residence permit. During the hearing, the Court ruled that the lawyers acting for Jennifer Gaspar – Sergei Golubok, Olga Tseitlina and Evgeny Smirnov – should sign a non-disclosure agreement concerning the FSB decision.

However, the applicant’s lawyers were in any case not permitted to see the document, despite the petition they submitted to be allowed to do so.

"The judges themselves studied the FSB’s decision in the silence of their retiring room and came to the conclusion that it was lawful,” Ivan Pavlov writes. “So you see there is no adversarial system in civil law, nor equality of arms either.”

Grani.ru writes that Ivan Pavlov had announced on 5 August 2014 that the residence permit given to Jennifer Gaspar had been annulled. The Federal Migration Service explained this by the fact that Jennifer Gaspar had allegedly “spoken out in support of changing the bases of the constitutional order of Russia by force, and by other actions had created a threat to the security of the state.”

"A more ridiculous assertion you could not think up,” Ivan Pavlov commented, “All the more so since no one has given us any indication of concrete reasons or motives [for the decision].”

On 19 August Judge Marina Motova, sitting in Frunzensky district court in St Petersburg, upheld the lawfulness of the ruling by the Federal Migration Service. Judge Motova dismissed a petition that the evidence confirming the lawfulness of the document should be made public.

On 12 November 2014 Ivan Pavlov reported that St. Petersburg City Court had also taken the side of the officials and that now the applicant would take her case to the European Court of Human Rights.

Ivan Pavlov has become well-known as a lawyer, frequently acting for the defence in prosecutions for espionage. In particular, thanks to Ivan Pavlov’s efforts, the prosecutions of Svetlana Davydova, a mother of seven children from Smolensk region, and Sergei Minakov, an electrician and mechanic with the Black Sea Fleet, were halted.

The non-profit of which Ivan Pavlov has been chair of the board works on the issues of public access to socially-significant information, above all information about the work of local government bodies.

Jennifer Gaspar now works for the American consulting company, Praxis Advisors.