In the summer of 2017, about 50 people with the support of members of the Public Monitoring Commission dare to report torture, severe beatings and unbearable conditions of detention in a single cell-type room, which is located on the territory of colony no. 31 in the Krasnoyarsk village of Industrialny. The EPCT is a prison within a prison, transferring there is the harshest punishment that the head of the colony can impose on a prisoner.
After the audit, which was carried out in 2018 by the Main Investigation Department of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation of the Krasnoyarsk Territory and the Republic of Khakassia, no violations were identified, none of the EPKT employees were fired, and some even went to the promotion. A criminal case was refused.
How told The Insider, the former chairman of the POC of the Krasnoyarsk Territory Valery Slepukha, those responsible for torturing the employees of the colony were hidden, transferred somewhere, and then they again appeared in higher positions.
“Many, the most notorious, made their careers before Moscow. Such things were done that they had to be kicked out of work, and they were simply transferred to another region or another institution. The same names appeared, ”said Slepukha.
The check is usually carried out by the head of the Federal Penitentiary Service for the region, his first deputies, the head of the colony and his deputy. The prosecutor’s office can join, but usually this is a separate check, lawyers say.
The commission begins to interrogate employees and convicts – either all of them are summoned, or someone in particular.
Former prisoner of Krasnoyarsk colony No. 31 Andrei Obskalov told The Insider that the convicts do not talk about what is happening in the colony, because all the checks carried out there are a formality, and if you complain, then punishment will follow.
“These checks are for show. It is enough to look at the conditions where we sit, and everything is clear. This window is 30 by 60 cm, when 5 people are sitting in the cell at 13 or 14 square meters. There is a meal, a toilet, and a sink. They come in, everyone can see it, and everyone is fine. What kind of check can this be? They ask questions, and you know that if you say something, then you will have very serious problems later. You will have to undergo executions, they will again be subjected to all this torture. Therefore, you say that there are no claims and complaints, everything is fine. They all know perfectly well! Themselves supervise all this and the participants in this lawlessness. They raise their stars, they have a career. There, there can be no question of any kind of humanity at all. Everyone wants the general’s stars, but how they were obtained, what human suffering, no one cares about this, ”says Andrey.
According to lawyers, usually the whole check consists in the fact that a survey of complaints is carried out. Also, the commission requests video recordings, if they are saved. If they are not there, then a report is drawn up about this, it describes the reason why the videos are missing or lost. Most often, nothing is confirmed as a result of the check. If the violations are confirmed, then for making a procedural decision, the materials are sent to the local investigation department.
As the lawyer of the Public Verdict Foundation Irina Biryukova noted in an interview with The Insider, these videos should have been. If there is video surveillance in the colony, then the Federal Penitentiary Service has direct access to all cameras in the colony. They should see all these videos and there should be reports and checks for each use of power.
“Even if no one complained, a daily round-the-camera round of the detachment officer and paramedic is carried out. The slightest injury should be recorded, reported and given an explanation. If not himself, then a check, if he himself, then a check. This should all be done initially, without waiting for the video, ”says the lawyer.
It should be noted that Krasnoyarsk is famous for being the very first region whose prisons have been completely modernized and equipped with video surveillance. But, as Biryukova notes, problems constantly arise with records in the Krasnoyarsk colonies.
“That power surge, then flooded, then something else. And nothing survived. Even if these records were, it could be that they all disappeared on the papers, that is, they were not preserved – a failure, overwriting of DVRs. It is on this day, which is needed, that something is sure to happen, ”the lawyer notes.
The Human Rights Council under the President of the Russian Federation is also going to inspect the Krasnoyarsk colonies after the publication of a video of beatings and torture.
“We really hope that the new head of the Federal Penitentiary Service, Arkady Gostev, will allow us. Now we are preparing such a request, and then how it will unfold. It depends on whether the FSIN wants to give us an objective picture or not, ”said Eva Merkacheva, a member of the HRC.
At the same time, the prisoners themselves do not take seriously the human rights defenders from the HRC. Members of the council walk in the presence of employees of the colony administration. For the convicts, this is tantamount to the fact that the head of the colony comes with a check.