Nikitin Judge to Use Secret Decrees

Publish date: October 19, 1998

Written by: Igor Kudrik

St. Petersburg - The judge in the Nikitin case, Sergey Golets, is expecting to receive secret decrees tomorrow, when the first court session begins. Then the judge plans to take a two day break in the court session to let Nikitin and his defence counsel to read through these documents. Nikitin's lawyer Yury Schmidt will argue that the legality to use the secret retroactive decrees must be established first.

– The judge is expecting to receive secret decrees by tomorrow morning,before the court session begins, said Aleksandr Nikitin to the BellonaWeb today. – Then the judge wants to suspend the court session for twodays to let me and my defence counsel to read through these documents.

The secret Defence Ministry decrees in question, some of them appliedretroactively, constitute basis for the high treason charges filedagainst Aleksandr Nikitin. Usage of secret retroactive normative actsagainst Nikitin is a direct violation of the Russian Constitution andinternationally recognised principles of legal protection.

Nikitin’s lawyer Yury Schmidt says that making these decrees availablefor the defence counsel and the accused will not remove violations ofthe Nikitin’s rights.

– The judge must first decide whether the very fact of applying thesedecrees is legal at all, says Yury Schmidt. – The charges must be basedon published federal laws. If not, the charges filed against Nikitinhave absolutely no legal grounds, adds Schmidt.