“IDEAL” NEWSPAPER FOUNDER SENTENCED TO SIX MONTH IN PRISON

May 21st, 2009
Today, 20 May, in the Nasimi District Court, under the chairmanship of Judge Elman Ahmadov, the hearing against “Ideal” Newspaper founder Nazim Guliyev on the lawsuit filed in the special format under articles 147.2 (libel, accusing someone of committing a grave or especially grave crime) and 148 (insult) by "Azeri-Turk" Women's Union Chairperson Tanzila Rustamkhanli and Sabira Mahmudova concluded. 

Judge E. Ahmadov issued a decision to find “Ideal” Newspaper’s Founder N. Guliyev guilty under article 148 of the Criminal Code and sentenced him to six months in prison.
Although the hearing was held open, the guards did not allow the journalists in the court hall stating that the room was small. The journalists were let in only when the verdict was announced.
Tanzila Rustamkhanli and Sabira Mahmudova had previously demanded that the court issue a decision to punish “Ideal” Newspaper founder Nazim Guliyev in accordance with articles 147.2, and 148 of the Criminal Code.  
On the basis of the lawsuit filed against N. Guliyev in the under articles 147.2 (libel in accusing someone in grave or especially grave crime) and 148 (insult) by "Azeri-Turk" Women's Union Chairperson Tanzila Rustamkhanli and Sabira Mahmudova, Nasimi District Court Judge Elman Ahmadov issued a decision to sentence Nazim Guliyev to pre-trial detention in November 2008, and a search warrant was issued for Guliyev since he did not come to the court and he was arrested on 24 April 2009. 
Yesterday T. Rustamkhanli and S. Mahmudova submitted an application to the court to withdraw their lawsuit against Nazim Guliyev. However, the plaintiffs refused to sign a settlement because a dispute occurred between the parties.
Nazim Guliyev’s case is highly controversial because he is known for writing articles that violate ethical norms. At the same time, people who advocate for the decriminalization of defamation call for him to be punished through different means other than imprisonment, unless he can is convicted for acts besides libel and defamation.