OUTRAGE: Petrenko Group political prisoner seriously injured by police in court

Chisinau, Moldova, October 3: Andrey Druz, one of the political prisoners of the Petrenko Group, was seriously injured when police expelled all of the defendants from the courtroom on orders of the judicial panel.

This was reported by relatives and friends of Druz. A shocking video from the courtroom was also published on social media.

Andrey Druz (third from left) with other Petrenko Group
members outside court in May 2016.
Photo: Greg Butterfield
“I just learned that after today’s forcible police expulsion of the Petrenko Group from the hearing which considered further preventive measures against them, one of the political prisoners, Andrey Druz, received a head injury and is now in critical condition in the emergency hospital,” wrote Vlada Amerberg, spouse of defendant Mikhail Amerberg.

“When defendant Andrey Druz was expelled from the courtroom, the police hit his head on the floor, with the result that he was hospitalized. Doctors say his condition is critical,” said Pavel Grigorchuk.

And former deputy Grigory Petrenko, who was in the room, confirmed the incident to MoldNews Agency.

“The police used physical force on Druz, who hit his head on the floor and lost consciousness. He was then transported to the hospital,” Petrenko said, adding that police also “used physical force against the pregnant spouse of Vladimir Zhurat,” who was present in the courtroom.

According to him, police forcibly expelled the accused at the start of the hearing on orders of the judges, who were angry with the Petrenko Group’s refusal to agree to be represented by court-appointed public defenders (imposed by the judges who removed attorney Anna Ursachi from the process last week).

After the defendants were expelled from the courtroom and the hearing, the court quickly considered the prosecutors’ request and extended judicial review for all members of the Petrenko Group for another 30 days.

Andrey Druz was seriously injured by police while Petrenko Group 

prisoners peacefully resisted illegal removal from their own court hearing.

Translated by Greg Butterfield

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