EYNULLA FATULLAYEV’S SENTENCE EXPECTED TO BE INCREASED BY THREE YEARS

December 30th, 2009
On 29 December, 0.22 grams heroin was found in the cell of imprisoned Editor-in-chief of Gundelik Azerbaijan and Realniy Azerbaijan Newspapers Eynulla Fatullayev. The Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety was told this by Eynulla Fatullayev’s father Emin Fatullayev. Emin Fatullayev said that the narcotic in question was found in the arm of Eynulla’s jacket and in his shoe. Father Fatullayev claimed that this incident is a “game” organized beforehand.

“As you already know, Eynulla’s case is in its final stage in the European Court of Human Rights,” said Emin Fatullayev. “‘Finding’ narcotics in his cell was pre-planned to sentence my son again.”

Emin Fatullayev added that this case was sent to Garadag District police Department to be investigated.

APA was told by the Garadag District police Department that a criminal case was already launched under article 234 (preparing, producing, obtaining and/or selling of narcotics illegally) of the Criminal Code and investigation is being conducted into the case. Yesterday a blood sample was taken from E.Fatullayev with the participation of his lawyer Isakhan Ashurov to clarify whether he is a narcotic user or not.

Eynulla Fatullayev was sentenced to 2.5 years of imprisonment on 21 April 2007 for insulting honor and dignity.  Later he was convicted under articles 214.1 (threatening terror), 283.2.2 (incitement of ethnic/national, social or religious hatred abusing authority), and 213.2.2 (tax evasion) of the Criminal Code and was sentenced to 8.5 years of imprisonment on 30 October 2007.       
   
Realniy Azerbaijan has been published as weekly newspaper, and Gundelik Azerbaijan has been published as a daily newspaper since 2005. Eynulla Fatullayev established the newspapers and was the editor-in-chief of both publications. The newspapers ceased their activity after the arrest of the editor-in-chief in 2007.

Reporters without Borders organization’s representative on Europe and post Soviet Republics Elza Vidal expressed opinion regarding new accusations put forth against Eynulla Fatullayev. According to Radio Liberty, Elza Vidal said that hearings on Fatullayev’s case in the European Court of Human Rights will be held next month and this questionable “discovery“ accusation is aimed to affect Fatullayev negatively and to demonstrate that he is guilty. “We want to show our support to the journalist once again because we know that he is not a narcotic user; he is a determined and objective journalist. Fatullayev touched upon such problems that the administration did not want to talk about," said E.Vidal and emphasized that they will support Fatullayev’s lawyer in the European Court of Human Rights where his case will be considered.