Nikitin’s defence team after third day of trial: Satisfied by judge’s professionalism

Publish date: October 22, 1998

Written by: Runar Forseth

ST. PETERSBURG (Bellona Web): "Today we observed the very high level of the judge's preparations, with satisfaction" said Jury Schmidt. "It was quite a surprise to us that the judge reached a level of preparation close to that of the defence."

"The judge has closely and thoroughly learned the 21 volumes of the case," continued Schmidt. He also knows the open sources. He knows the contents of all the books. The questions he asked Nikitin today were not only asked as a professional legal expert, but also as an expert in other fields. That is why Aleksandr was feeling easy and safe today, as he felt he was being understood."

Judge Golets used the balance of the day for continued questioning of Nikitin. Only for the last hour did the prosecutor get to put in a few questions, questions that were far off the mark, according to defender Schmidt. "I do not want to be too optimistic, but there was no questions from the prosecutor that underlined the serious charges," said Schmidt.

First witnesses to be heard tomorrow
Tomorrow, on the scheduled last day of the trial, the first witnesses will be heard. There will be three of them, but their names are not yet publicised. Thus, the defence team would not reveal their identities.

Whether the proceedings will end tomorrow or not, is still unclear. Although they didn’t spell it out at the briefing, the defence team seemed very confident. They will, as a matter of course, have new information to share tomorrow.