A victory in court: a lawyer of ADC “Memorial,” O. Tseitlina, defends a family of foreign citizens from deportation and placement in the detention centre

Recently ADC “Memorial” held a roundtable discussion dedicated to the successful experience of the appeal to the European Court on Human Rights on the violation of foreign citizens’ rights in detention centres (http://memorial.spb.ru/www/3305.html?lang=en). Regardless of Russia’s admission to inhumane conditions of detention in the case of Lakatosh and Others v. Russia, the violation of rights of detained migrants continue, in St. Petersburg and in other regions. For an effective fight with such violations, ADC “Memorial” expands its work to provide legal help to foreign citizens in the temporary detention centres, now in the framework of the project “Legal help for illegally detained migrants,” with support of OAK Foundation.

Recently, the citizens of Kyrgyzstan, Maisalbek T. and his wife Asylgul, appealed to the ADC “Memorial”, whose rights were violated as a result of the court’s decisions of their administrative expulsion and placement in the temporary detention centres for foreign nationals. The court of the Nevsky district of St. Petersburg found Maisalbek and his wife guilty of violating the residency laws. Maisalbek was placed in the temporary detention centre; his wife was also detained, regardless of the fact that they had a young child, who was left alone in their family’s apartment in Saint Petersburg.

The administrative case of the applicants was conducted with gross violations of the procedural requirements, stipulated in the Code of Administrative Offences (КоАП) of the Russian Federation, which did not allow to objectively view the case. According to their relatives, during their detention, Maisalbek was not allowed to use his cell phone or get in touch with his relatives, as well as was pressured during the investigation of the administrative case.

In order to effectively help the family of the applicant, ADC “Memorial” worked with the lawyer O. Tseitlina, who had a vast amount of experience with appeals due to violations of rights of migrants. In the applicants’ case, the lawyer lodged a complaint against the ruling of deportation, referring to numerous procedural violations. She appealed that it was the most unmotivated decision of deportation, as well as a baseless decision of the court to place the applicant in the temporary detention centre.

On November 2nd, a court hearing took place, where the court completely satisfied the applicant’s complaint, annulled the decision about the deportation and placement in the temporary detention centre, declaring it “illegal and baseless.” Currently, the applicant’s family is staying in St. Petersburg, Maisalbek and his wife are planning to apply for a Russian citizenship.

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