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On October 31st Togrul Ahmedov, son of former MP Guler Ahmedova, testified in the trial of Khural newspaper chief editor Avaz Zeynalli, which was held in the Baku Grave Crimes Court. According to the witness, he was told by his mother that Avaz Zeynalli had been blackmailing her. When Zeynalli asked Ahmedov “What made your mother sue me? What was she particularly afraid of?”, the witness said he did not exactly remember anything. In turn, Zeynalli informed the witness that he had not possessed any information to blackmail his mother.
Afterwards the testimony of another witness, Vugar Mammadov, and the minutes of his court room confrontation with Zeynalli was read.
At the end of the trial the judge invited the defendant to testify. However Zeynalli refused, saying that it would be a “self-disrespect” if he testifies before the rest of the witnesses.
The hearing was postponed until November 7th, 2:00pm.
Avaz Zeynalli was arrested on October 28, 2011 and is charged under Article 311.3.3 (taking large bribe) and 311.3.4(extortion) of the Criminal Code, based on the lawsuit filed by former MP Guler Ahmedova. Ahmedova claims she was blackmailed by Zeynalli, who allegedly tried to extort money from her.
A recent video footage posted on a social networking website exposed Guler Ahmedova’s involvement in corrupt activities, where Ahmedova demanded a huge amount of bribe from former university rector Elshad Abdullayev. After that Ahmedova was deprived of her parliamentary mandate. The Prosecutor General’s office has launched a criminal case against her under Article 178.3.2 (fraud).