Bar Association Litigation Against Lawyer Continues

May 23rd, 2016

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Summary: Hearing 2

 Muzaffar Bakhishov was a practicing lawyer until his disbarment by the decision of the Bar Association Presidium on April 1, 2016. Supreme Court judge Tatyana Goldman had complained to the Bar Association against Muzaffar Bakhishov over the latter’s comments about Supreme Court chairman Ramiz Rzayev in a media interview. As a lawyer, Muzaffar Bakhishov defended the rights of a number of political prisoners. The Bar Association Presidium has submitted a request to Narimanov District Court to terminate Muzaffar Bakhishov’s lawyer activity;
 At today’s hearing, defendant Muzaffar Bakhishov’s representative, Samad Rahimli filed a written motion to decline to hear the lawsuit with a justification that the lawsuit against the defendant has been filed by an institution not having the status of a legal entity. The judge rejected the motion;
 The defendant’s representative also submitted a written application to the court for a stay of proceedings with a justification that on May 23, 2016, Muzaffar Bakhishov filed a lawsuit with Baku Administrative Economic Court #2 for annulment of the defendant’s, i.e. Bar Association Presidium’s decision of April 01, 2016. The representative asked the court to suspend the current proceedings until a final decision is made on the above case. The judge postponed the hearing to discuss the motion.

Narimanov District Court, chaired by Judge Gultakin Asadova, continued the hearing on Bar Association Presidium’s request to terminate the lawyer activity of lawyer Muzaffar Bakhishov.

Motion and application submitted by defendant’s representative:

At the hearing, defendant Muzaffar Bakhishov’s representative Samad Rahimli filed a written motion to decline to hear the lawsuit. “At the preliminary court hearing on May 11, 2016, we filed a motion to decline to hear the lawsuit. The presiding judge said the motion would be discussed during the trial. As the defense, we reiterate our motion and ask the court to decide that motion at the first hearing of the trial, because as the defense, we have the right to a trial corresponding to the principle of legal certainty. We believe that this issue must be addressed as a priority. Therefore, we restate our arguments in this motion and file the motion once again. According to Part I of Article 9 of the Law of Azerbaijan Republic on Advocates and Advocate Activities, a non-state, independent and self-governing Bar Association uniting all lawyers operates in Azerbaijan. According to Part II of this Article, the Bar Association is a legal entity. According to Part IV of this Article, the general meeting (conference) of Bar Association members and the Presidium of the Bar Association are bodies of the Bar Association. The present lawsuit against the defendant has been filed by the Presidium, which is a body of the Bar Association lacking an official legal entity status and therefore the civil procedural capacity. According to Article 259.0.2 of Civil Procedural Code, where a petition is filed by a person lacking action capacity, court shall leave petition without consideration,” Samad Rahimli said.

Bar Association Presidium representative Shahmar Mammadov said the motion should be rejected as unfounded.

After a prompt deliberation, the judge announced that the motion was not sustained, but did not explain why.

Next, the defendant’s representative Samad Rahimli submitted a written application for a stay of proceedings. “On May 23, 2016, defendant Muzaffar Bakhishov filed a lawsuit with Baku Administrative Economic Court #2 for annulment of the defendant’s, i.e. Bar Association Presidium’s decision of April 01, 2016. Therefore, we believe that the current proceedings should be suspended until the lawsuit against the said decision is heard, because if Baku Administrative Economic Court #2 annuls the said decision, there will be no need to hear the present lawsuit. The factual circumstances and basics of both cases are the same,” the representative said.

The presiding judge quoted the information received from Baku Administrative Economic Court #2 as stating that on May 23, 2016, the defendant filed a lawsuit with the said court. For that reason, the hearing on the present case was postponed to June 1, 15.30, until the other court decided the issue of admissibility of the lawsuit.