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Karakalpakstan: Dauletmurat Tajimuratov transfer from prison to colony and his life is under threat

On July 8, Dauletmurat Tajimuratov was transferred from a prison to a maximum-security colony within the same penal institution No. 11 in Navoi. Although both facilities are in the same area and have one director, they are separated by a wall. Tajimuratov was sentenced to 16 years in the strict-regime colony, with the first two years to be served in prison. The differences between the prison and the maximum-security colony include the frequency of family visits and the amount of food and necessity packages allowed from family members, both of which are significantly higher in the colony. Additionally, the colony allows convicts to spend more time outside their cells, eat in a common dining facility, and live in larger rooms with more people. The detainees in prison regime spend almost 24 hours in a cell, with no more than an hour of outdoor walk per day.

Dauletmurat Tajimuratov’s lawyer, Sergei Mayorov, contends that numerous injustices and procedural violations occurred throughout Tajimuratov’s trial. Mayorov specifically criticizes the court’s decision to confine Tajimuratov in both a prison regime and a maximum-security colony, asserting that this was unjust and contrary to legal procedures. Mayorov argues that Tajimuratov, who had no prior convictions, should have been sentenced to a general-regime colony instead. He points out that the court’s ruling on January 31, 2023, falsely assumed Tajimuratov had a previous conviction justifying high-security imprisonment, which was not the case.

Tajimuratov had been previously sentenced to two years on December 9, 2016, but was released on March 17, 2017, under Article 73 of the Criminal Code. By March 17, 2021, his conviction was expunged under Article 78, paragraph 1(d), which clears records after four years for sentences under five years. In April and May 2021, Tajimuratov was granted an attorney’s license and certificate, which he could not have obtained with a criminal record. Furthermore, the Kungrad Civil Court ruled in his favor in case No2-2301-2105/12372, awarding him compensation for moral damage from individuals who falsely claimed he had criminal records by 2021. These claims were proven false as his convictions had been cleared by then. On February 18, 2022, the Kungrad Court reaffirmed this and awarded him compensation, citing that official records from and the Ministry of Internal Affairs confirmed he had no convictions as of September 15, 2020. Therefore, the court’s decision to sentence Tajimuratov to maximum security imprisonment was illegal. He should have only been sentenced to a general regime colony as a person without a prior conviction.

Moreover, Renat Tajimuratov, Dauletmurat’s brother and defender in his letter to Sergei Mayorov mentioned that Dauletmurat should be transferred to “KIN-22”. Former law enforcement and civil service officers are serving their sentences in this colony. Dauletmurat Tajimuratov, by virtue of his career as a lawyer working in various government agencies, should also have the right to serve his sentence in “KIN-22”. In addition, it was previously reported by Dauletmurat that he was beaten in prison and was threatened by the prison director, who threatened him to revoke his transfer to colony and return him to prison regime.

Given that his transfer was carried out to a colony in the same facility and under the supervision of the same director, there is a significant risk of provocations and threats to Dauletmurat’s life. In addition, Renat Tajimuratov, despite having the right to visit Dauletmurat as his defender, still experiences difficulties with visits due to artificially created obstacles. This right of visitations should not be restricted.

Attorney Sergei Mayorov has also sent an open letter to President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev, as well as to the General Prosecutor and the Ministry of Internal Affairs, regarding the violations of Dauletmurat Tajimuratov’s rights as a prisoner in prison No. 11 in Navoi. Mayorov alleges that the prison administration is deliberately attempting to psychologically and physically harm Dauletmurat Tajimuratov. Mayorov outlines several grievances, including inhumane treatment by the prison administration and obstruction of Tajimuratov’s rights to seek justice. Specifically, Mayorov points out that the prison administration is impeding Tajimuratov’s ability to correspond freely with his attorney, interfering with attorney-client privilege by scrutinizing all correspondence and documents. These actions of the administration of prison No. 11 highlight the arbitrary and unlawful practices within Uzbekistan’s prison system.

Freedom for Eurasia urges the government of Uzbekistan to ensure Dauletmurat Tajimuratov’s safety, protect his right to adequate conditions in prison, and ensure his fundamental rights are respected, including visits from relatives and attorneys, receiving packages, and access to information and news.

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