AZERBAIJANI GOVERNMENT CLAIMS ECHR JUDGMENT HAS BEEN FULLY IMPLEMENTED

April 27th, 2011
 “In accordance with the judgment passed on Eynulla Fatullayev, he still owes the state 260,000 AZN due to tax evasion,” the APA heard from Azerbaijan’s delegate to the European Court of Human Rights, Chingiz Asgarov.

The government has paid Fatuallayev the compensation ordered by the ECHR, but it is currently being held in a frozen account. Because the Azerbaijani supreme court has ruled that he has a 260 thousand AZN debt to the state for tax evasion, Fatullayev cannot access his compensation funds.
”The Azerbaijajni government’s position is that the European court judgement has been fully implemented. Two decisions passed by Azerbaijani Supreme Court concluded that according to the ECHR judgment, the criminal case against Fatullayev should be terminated and he should be released. The Supreme Court executed the judgment. We have paid the compensation, but because he still has a 260 thousand AZN debt to the state for tax evasion. Therefore the government is considering anulling his tax evasion debt, so he can access his frozen funds,” stated Asgarov.
The journalist’s attorney Anar Gasimov says that the alleged tax evasion debt can only be collected under a court decision.
The journalist’s father Emin Fatullayev met with his son yesterday.
He told IRFS that the journalists’ health is normal and that Fatullayev offered his condelences to the family of former MP Anar Mammadkhanov, who was his friend.

BACKGROUND
On the 29th of December, 2009, 0.223 grams of heroin was reportedly found on Fatullayev in Prison #12 and on the 6th of July, 2010, Fatullayev was found guilty under article 234.1 (possession of narcotics) of the Criminal Code. His sentence of two years and six months in prison began on the same date. His appeal against the decision was rejected.
In 2007, Eynulla Fatullayev, editor-in-chief of “Realniy Azerbaydjan” and “Gundelik Azerbaycan” newspapers, was sentenced to 8.5 years in jail for threatening terrorism, amongst other charges. However, on April 22, 2010, the European Court of Human Rights ruled for his immediate release and financial compensation from the Azerbaijani government (27,800 EUR). The Azerbaijani Supreme Court Plenum has only partially fulfilled the decision.