MASS DISORDERS CONTINUE IN THE COURTROOM
Hayots Ashkhar Daily
Published on June 04, 2008
Interview with KORYUN PASHINYAN, Senior Prosecutor of the General
Prosecutor’s Office, defender of the lawsuit filed in connection with
the March 1 disorders
"The participants of the hearing very often have a critical attitude
towards the defendants who plead guilty in the courtroom."
"The attitude displayed in the courtroom is very aggressive, but I
would like to speak about the attitude of some attorneys. To begin
with, the attorney’s task is to defend the accused. But there are
attorneys who simply subordinate the individual’s interest to their
own political interests.
Just see: the fact that the defendants have pleaded guilty to the
crimes committed is a fact deriving from their interests, and if the
same defendants express the truth in the courtroom as well, it will
be possible to mitigate the burden of responsibility. But the defense
attorney comes and does his/her best in the courtroom to prevent the
defendant from pleading guilty and openly states that the stricter
the punishment the better.
In my view, what happens currently is the continuation of the disorders
in the courtroom. Some groups of hired individuals wander about the
courts and courtrooms, having a primary goal of interrupting the
hearings, intimidating the prosecutors and attempting to use pressure."
"There were press reports saying that the detainees use pressure
against the witnesses not only in the courts but also in the
"There has obviously been some communication, and I believe that it
happens through the attorneys as well. If you pay attention to the
motions proposed by the defense attorneys in the courtroom, you will
see that the same text has been distributed to everybody. The same
text is available to all the attorneys no matter whether it applies
to their defendants or not.
The atorneys come and begin reading the texts as though they had
learnt them by heart.
It has now become strictly fashionable to bring examples from the
European Court and the Convention on Human Rights – things that bear
no relationship to the case. What’s more, the attorneys do not even
know the factual circumstances of the examples they bring."
"I wonder whether the examples you mentioned concern the prosecutions
of the individuals who participated in the lootings of ‘Roberto’ and
‘Yerevan City’ shops."
"Yes they do. The absurdity is that L. Ter-Petrosyan announces the
looters do not belong to their team. If you are not the looters,
why do your women supporters come and organize demonstrations for
In any case, the numerous attempts of politicizing the case are
never crowned with success. The cases examined so far have revealed
substantiated facts that the given offences have been committed by
the given people."
"It has been emphasized many times that society is split, divided into
two poles which are ill-disposed towards each other. Do you feel that
during the court hearings?"
"I definitely do. Even if I make a statement in favor of the accused,
the people in the courtroom become aggressive again because it was
me that made the statement. It’s all the same to them what I say. If
I say something, it’s subject to attack; if the attorney stands up
and discredits the defendant, they applaud.
…What happened in Armenia is an unprecedented crime which has
produced grave consequences not only in terms of the victims but also
in terms of the rÃ¥putation of our state in general. I believe it’s
time for all the people to realize what has really happened, and give
account first to their conscience and then – to the court of law."