PRELIMINARY HEARING HELD AGAINST MAHAL ISMAYILOGLU

April 7th, 2009
Today, 7 April, in the Absheron District Court, under the chairmanship of Judge Shamsaddin Abbasov, a preliminary hearing was held on the case under article 128 (intentional infliction of minor bodily harm) and 221.3 of the Criminal Code (hooliganism with use of a weapon or weapon-like item) against "Yeni Musavat" columnist and former Editor-in-Chief of “Khalg” Newspaper Mahal Ismayiloglu.

Defendant Mahal Ismayiloglu, his lawyers Elchin Sadigov and Alayif Hasanov, and Nasiba Safarova (as the injured party), her lawyer Novruz Aliyev and state prosecutor Tofig Suleymanoglu participated in the hearing. Lawyer Hasanov put forth three motions asking the judge to throw out the court case, to remove the statements of Nasiba Jafarova and her husband Khanlar Zeynalov, and to number the material of the criminal case. After returning from deliberations, Judge S.Abbasov stated that the motions all motions were denied.
Then defense lawyer Elchin Sadigov put forth several motions. The first one was to end the case opened under article 128. According to the legislation, the injured party has to submit written appeal in order to open a case under article 128, said Sadigov. The lawyer noted that the case opened under article 128 is unfounded since it was instituted without the abovementioned appeal. The second motion was about inviting to the court witnesses that say that the accused person was not in the garden. After brief deliberations, the judge returned and announced that these motions were also denied.
Another motion was to call to court two witnesses who the defense alleges signed blank pieces of paper that were not added to criminal case materials. The judge fulfilled this motion. Then E.Sadigov put forth a motion to discontinue the execution of the case due to the illness of Mahal Ismayiloglu. The judge did not fulfill this motion, noting that a pre-trial restrictions have been instituted against the journalist. A motion in connection with identifying the location of Mahal’s mobile phone to find out whether he was at the scene of the incident happened when the incident occurred was also not fulfilled.

The next hearing on this case is now scheduled to take place on 16 April at 4:00 p.m.  
On 27 June 2008, M. Ismayiloglu was called to a police department on the basis of a lawsuit filed against him by his neighbor Vahid Imanov, who works in the Ministry of Interior. In the complaint it is alleged that the journalist beat his neighbor's servant for dumping trash in his yard. Therefore a criminal case on Article 221.3 of the Criminal Code (hooliganism with use of a weapon or weapon-like item) was instituted against M.Ismayiloglu.