2013/03/21 "Verdict Comes into Force"
  • Press Release No.16/1539
  • 21/03/2013

TODAY, March 21, the Mother's Right Foundation claims victory in the North Caucasus Military District Court where it represented the interests of mother of a deceased serviceman Alla Nikolayevna Zgerskaya. Her son, Artyom Zgersky’s (b. 1993), died in the military last autumn as a result of assault and battery on the part of his fellow serviceman Zalukashev. On January 18, 2013, the Mother’s Right Foundation represented the interests of the mother of the deceased in Vladikavkaz Garrison Court: Zalukashev was sentenced to 4.5 years in a penal colony of general regime under Article 335, Section 3, of the RF CC (bullying). For more information, please see press release 04/1527 of January 18, 2012. Thanks to today’s victory of the Mother’s Right Foundation, the sentence of the murderer of Artyom Zgersky came into force. Artyom Zgersky was called up to military service in July 2012 and served in M.U. 20634. Artyom was one of those boys whom military commissariats declare fit for military service, but de facto, they are not. They are not aggressive; they are kind; they are inclined to intellectual work and never show their physical strength. Weeping, Alla Nikolayevna told us about her son, “Artyom was not as strong as Zalukashev. He was 178 cm tall and weighed only 52 kg. Zalukashev is shorter but looks strong, and he knows martial arts. How could he raise a hand against Artyom?” Artyom was fond of music and nature; he had a special notebook with poems by Yesenin… “Once, Artyom was on duty at the checkpoint. An old man, who was passing by, gave him an apple. Quite of a sudden, Artyom started crying: he remembered his late grandfather, his mom’s dad...”

In civilian life, boys like Artyom are useful: they become inventors, artists, poets as well as good family men and law abiding citizens. They work, pay taxes, and participate in charities. They are unfit for military service and as a rule they are the first victims of servicemen with criminal tendencies (like Zalukashev). On 15 August, 2012 Artyom was beaten by his fellow serviceman Zalukashev (allegedly for failure to keep order in their subdivision). Zalukashev’s blows were strong enough to cause grave injuries. For several days Artyom performed his duties while in pain. On 19 August, 2012 Artyom felt extremely bad, and on 20 August 2012 he was transported to hospital. There he died without recovering consciousness.

The court of first instance declared: Zalukashev’s guilt in the death of Atyom Zgersky was proved in full. Nevertheless, the accused and his attorneys considered the sentence, i.e. 4.5 years in a penal colony, too harsh and filed appeals. In its turn, the Mother’s Right Foundation submitted well-reasoned objections to their appeals.

Today, a panel of judges of the North Caucasus Military District Court considered the case and left the decision passed by Vladikavkaz Garrison Court on January 18, 2013 unchanged; the appeals filed by Zalukashev and his attorneys were dismissed. Thus, the decision in the case of Artyom Zgersky’s death has come into force.