Activist Rza Safarsoy challenges judge

Activist Rza Safarsoy challenges judge

Activist Rza Safarsoy rejected the accusation of illegal arms trafficking. At the preparatory session of the court, he stated that he was arrested on a political order due to the criticism of the Azerbaijani authorities.

A preparatory hearing on Safarsoy's case began in the Khazar district court of Baku on April 15. The activist stated that the TT pistol, which, according to the investigation, was found in his possession, was planted in his apartment by police officers.

According to Safarsoy, on November 23, 2023, police officers came to his house and searched it. "When I left the house, plainclothes police officers in masks came to us. My wife was forcibly taken out of the house and held hostage in her car for three hours. They tied my hands and locked me in a room. They walked around the apartment uncontrollably, put a weapon under the mattress, and then "found it," Safarsoy said.

He challenged judge Huseyn Huseynli. Safarsoy explained this by the fact that during the preliminary investigation, the judge considered the petitions and complaints of Safarsoy's defense and did not satisfy any of them. According to Safarsoy, he was arrested on trumped-up charges due to harsh criticism of the authorities.

Lawyer Nazim Musayev supported the recusal. "Without a court decision, you cannot invade someone's house, search it. On November 23, police officers acted in this way against Rza Safarsoy. The next day, in order to hide their illegal actions, they forcibly took statements from Rza Safarsoy that he did not object to the search.

We filed a complaint with the court about the illegality of this operational search event. However, the judge (Huseyn Huseynli), despite the obvious violations, decided on the "legality" of the search," the lawyer said.

Due to the recusal of the judge, a break was announced, the next meeting is scheduled for April 19. By this time, the challenge will be considered by the chairman of the Khazar district court.
Safarsoy is a veteran of the first Karabakh War. In 2018, he was already arrested on charges of illegal arms trafficking after sharply criticizing the mass arrests in the city of Ganja. Then he was sentenced to 2 years of imprisonment. After 7 months, the Court of Appeal released him, reducing his sentence.
His current arrest came two days after he sharply criticized the arrests of the heads of "Abzas Media" on social networks and called on citizens to protest.

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