DRUGS / FREEDOM OF SPEECH: BASMANNY COURT INFORMED NIKOLAJ KHRAMOV THAT HIS COMPLAINT HAD BEEN CONSIDERED TWO MONTHS AGO IN ABSENCE OF BOTH DECLARANT AND HIS LAWYER


Moscow, December 15, 2004. The secretary of the movement "Russian Radicals" Nikolaj Khramov received today by mail from the Basmanny district court of the city of Moscow a copy of the decision of this court about refusal of satisfaction of Khramov's complaint against the decision delivered on this August 27 by the justice of the peace Valentina Savushkina who recognized Khramov guilty of "advertising of marijuana" and imposed on him the administrative fine of 2 000 roubles for his nonviolent action on August 12 in front of the building of the State Committee for Drug Control, consisting of demonstrative distribution of leaflets with the text of the petition of Radicals for legalization of marijuana, addressed to the government and the parliament of Russia. The purpose of this action was to provoke institution of legal proceedings against the leader of Radicals according to the article 46 of the Federal law "About narcotics and psychotropic substances" which actually bans distribution of any, even objective, information about prohibited drugs, and thus to get an opportunity to address to the Constitutional Court with a request about conformity with the Constitution of Russia of this article of the anti-drug law.

The decision of the Basmanny court of October 14 was delivered by the federal judge A.V.Rasnovsky in absence of both the declarant and his lawyer Boris Sevastyanov (Moscow Bar "Binetsky and partners") in spite of the fact that the day before the lawyer sent to the court a telegram petitioning to postpone the consideration of the complaint as he was engaged in other trial outside Moscow.