Founder of Youtube channel complained to court about police torture

Founder of Youtube channel complained to court about police torture

On 29 May, court hearings on the case of Teymur Kerimov, founder of YouTube project "Kanal-11" Teymur Kerimov, started in Baku Serious Crimes Court chaired by Azad Mejidov.

Prosecutor Fariz Rzayev announced the indictment, claiming that Kerimov, together with reporter Istak Totieva, extorted money from Farrukh Alekperov and Leyla Almaszade in exchange for removing critical videos about them from the internet.

Note that Totieva is at large "under police supervision".

Kerimov told the court that on 11 December 2023 he was roughly detained by men in plain clothes, taken to the police station and beaten.  According to him, this took place at the Interior Ministry's main department for combating organised crime.   First he was demanded to confess to a drug-related offence, and then to confess of extortion.

"But I refused to self-incriminate, but gave in when I was threatened with rape with a truncheon,’ the channel head said.

Judge Mejidov said a letter would be sent to the prosecutor's office to investigate Kerimov's statement.  However, the defense had already appealed to the prosecutor's office with a complaint of torture, but was refused to initiate criminal proceedings against them.

After that, the trial was adjourned.

*Recall that Kerimov was arrested in December 2023 on charges under Articles 182.2.2 (repeated extortion by threats), 182.2.4. (extortion for seizing property in a significant amount) and 182.2.1 (extortion by a group of persons by prior agreement) of the Criminal Code of Azerbaijan.

Human rights activists recognized him as a political prisoner.

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