Consideration of Appeal by Satirist Tofig Hasanli Completed

The Shirvan Court of Appeal chaired by Alaskar Novruzov continued the examination of the application by the satirical poet Tofig Hasanli on December 19. The man was sentenced to 6 years in prison on charges of drug trafficking on a large scale.

According to the satirist's lawyer Elchin Sadigov, at the request of the defense the court questioned the detective of the Southern Regional Detective Department of the Main Drug Enforcement Administration at the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Azerbaijan Fakhri Gasimov.

According to Sadigov, the police officer led the operation to apprehend Hasanli, while officially the head of the operational-search measure was appointed Officer of the Main Drug Enforcement Administration at the Ministry of Internal Affairs Elman Tarlanov.

According to the lawyer, Gasimov explained it with the fact that he decided not to bother the "senior officer" and took over the job.

Gasimov also did not deny the fact that he also used the witnesses Gasim Farzullaev and Balakhani Huseynov in other criminal cases. So the detective in fact confirmed that these witnesses were often used by the police as such.

The defense also petitioned to call other operatives. However, the judge rejected the petition and announced the completion of the consideration of the merits.

Closing statements by the parties and the announcement of the decision is scheduled for December 22.

Tofig Hasanli was sentenced August 22, 2016 for 6 years in prison on charges of drug trafficking. Hasanli is known for his critical pamphlets in the media against the authorities and government officials.

In 2005, he was convicted of drugs for three years, but in 2007 he was released under an amnesty.

Hasanli continued to publish satire on Facebook and YouTube. In January 2015, he stated that he was threatened with arrest, and in October he was detained.  -06B-

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