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Rivne prosecutors submit the Vlad Isayev funeral wreath case to court

28.03.2024, 10:18

The Rivne Oblast Prosecutor's Office submitted to court an indictment against a Rivne resident who is suspected of having left a funeral wreath at the door of a journalist's apartment, reports the Rivne Oblast Prosecutor's Office.

According to the investigation, in July 2023, the suspect left a funeral wreath next to the door of a local news agency's chief editor, writing "Eternal memory, bright memory... from grateful readers" on the ribbon.

The prosecutors note that despite the careful planning and conspiracy, the police identified and tracked the cars and traffic routes of potential culprit, their communication circle and mobile traffic.

Vlad Isayev, who received a funeral wreath under his apartment's front door. Photo by Vlad Isayev on Facebook

They also added that during the pre-trial investigation they analyzed hundreds of posts on social media and in Telegram channels, questioned a large number of witnesses, carried out multiple undercover investigative operations, authorized searches and forensic examinations.

The suspect did not cooperate with the investigation, pleaded not guilty and tried to feign an alibi. However, the prosecutors note, in December 2023 the police obtained enough evidence to notify one of the men of suspicion, now submitting an indictment against this person to the Rivne City Court. Currently, the law enforcers are looking into the involvement of other persons in the crime.

The indictment defines the crime as death threats or violent threats to a journalist due to the journalist's legal professional work by a group of persons upon prior conspiracy (Part 2 of Article 28, Part 1 of Article 345-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine).

The maximum punishment stipulated by the article is up to three years in prison.

According to the IMI, the journalist in question is Vlad Isayev. On July 3, 2023, unknown persons in Rivne placed a funeral wreath at his front door.

The wreath placed at the door of Vlad Isayev's apartment. Photo by Vlad Isayev on Facebook

Vlad Isayev told the IMI that he was the editor of the news agency "Zakhidny Argument", though the agency's website no longer exists. The last post on the media outlet's Facebook page is from September 21, 2021. Isayev was also a journalist with "Rivne Vechirne", a website editor at "Press Center", and the founder of the Telegram channel "Stierlitz", which posts revealing information about the government.

On December 19, 2023, a court in Rivne arrested a local man aged 25 for two months on the suspicion of leaving a funeral wreath at the front door of journalist Vlad Isayev's apartment.

Earlier, on June 14, Isayev's car was set on fire. He believed this had to do with his reporting. Back then, the police opened a case for deliberate damage to property by way of arson (Part 2 of Article 194 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine).

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