The aggrieved party in colonel Budanov’s case uses any chance to delay the proceedings and keep the colonel detained as long as only possible. The colonel is charged with raping and murder of Chechen girl Elza Kungayeva. Parents of the girl plan to change the attorney. Yury Budanov’s defense treats the plan as an attempt to delay the legal proceedings.
Hearing of the case was resumed after almost a year-long break in Rostov-on-Don yesterday. The Vremya Novostei Russian newspaper informs, now the trial can be suspended for an uncertain period once again. New attorney of the Kungayevs’, Stanislav Markelov, will need enough time to study details of the criminal case.
Meanwhile, the forensic medical expertise revealed that colonel Budanov had been irresponsible at the moment of murder. Thus, as medical experts say, in accordance with the RF Criminal Code, the colonel can not be given to a trial; he will have only to undergo out-patient treatment in the area of his own residence.
Today the Rostov court continues examining results of medical expertise on Elza Kungayeva’s body. Answer to one of the most important questions has been already given: the girl had not been raped as was originally stated. Alexey Dulimov, Yury Budanov’s attorney says, “this fact exonerates colonel Budanov of the rape charge.” As the expertise revealed, the girl died of asphyxia. Earlier the aggrieved party insisted, the girl had been buried being still alive.
The Russkaya Liniya (Russian Line) news agency gives its own version of the situation: “the story depicts the authorities and President Putin personally in an ambiguous light. On the one hand, it was perfectly clear Chechnya wanted to turn Budanov’s case into a trial on Russia’s belligerent army that waged a war under conditions when no war at all was officially declared. That supposed, any commander could be brought to trial for abuse of authority. If colonel Budanov were convicted, President Putin would possibly lose his prestige among Russian officers, especially those who were at that war. On the other hand, Putin would have a talk with protesting Europe in case the colonel was acquitted. And suddenly a way out was found: the expertise concluded the colonel had been irresponsible. At the same time, we can not say for sure, whether there are sane people at all at wars.”
It is to be added here, colonel Budanov already spent almost three years in jail waiting for a court decision.
Sergey Yugov PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Maria Gousseva
Read the original in Russian: http://www.pravda.ru/main/2002/05/17/41262.html