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The man who assaulted journalists in Odesa during the Revolution of Dignity receives a suspended sentence

21.11.2023, 16:07
Photo: Dumska
Photo: Dumska

The Prymorsky District Court of Odesa sentenced the man who assaulted journalists and activists during the 2014 Revolution of Dignity to five years in prison with a three-year probation period on November 9, reports "Dumska".

The attacker, Arthur Zanfirov, has already been prosecuted for obstructing the legitimate professional work of journalists. Back in December 2015, the Prymorsky District Court of Odesa restricted his freedom for one year with a probation period for hitting the camera of Channel 5 cameraman, Serhiy Ishchenko, near the Odesa Oblast Administration on February 19, 2014.

Later, the attorneys charged him with illegal interference with rallies committed by a group of persons upon a prior conspiracy and with the use of physical violence. The indictment was submitted to the court in 2018, but for some reason the verdict was only passed five years later, "Dumska" writes.

According to the media outlet, Zanfirov signed a plea agreement, and the court sentenced him to five years in prison with a three-year probation period.

As reported by the IMI, on February 19, 2014, several buses with titushkas (some of whom wore the same uniform, masks, and batons) were brought to the Odesa Oblast Administration, where a Euromaidan rally was taking place. Over 100 unknown persons in camouflage without identifiable badges assaulted and beat the Euromaidan protesters and the journalists filming the rally.

The dozens victims included journalists from "Ukrinform", "Komsomolska Pravda", "Nova Odesa TV", Channel 5, "Novy Kanal", "Dumska", "Reporter", and the "Pershy Misky" channel. Three television cameras were broken.  "Pershy Misky" journalists and cameramen (Eduard Shenderovych, Ihor Hvozdev, Mykola Pokrovsky), a Channel 5 cameraman (Serhiy Ishchenko), a "Reporter" journalist (Leonid Sobolev), an "Inter" cameraman (Ihor Mekhonoshyn), a "Novy Kanal" cameraman (Ihor Kazanzhi), and an "Ukrinform" cameraman Andriy Novak were injured.

After that, the titushkas fled from the crime scene. The police officers standing in the square did not try to prevent the assault on journalists or the attackers' escape.

As "Dumska" notes, for all the nearly 10 years that the "February 19 case" has been under investigation, rulings have been passed only in relation to a few perpetrators of the crime. Oleksandr Orlov, the Tairove Council secretary who was the deputy head of the Odesa Oblast Administration at the time, was the only one of the alleged masterminds of the attack who got in the dock. The last time the court assembled to try his case was in 2021. The next hearing is planned for this December.

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