Written materials from the case are still being reviewed.
The Public Prosecutor has read a letter from the Lithuanian bank NORD; the amounts that were transferred to Bialiatski by the Norwegian Helsinki Committee listing “Viasna” in the “Purpose” column; a letter from the Belarusian Ministry of Justice stating the center “Viasna” and its regional offices had been shut down. The case files also contain membership lists of Viasna regional branches (as a reminder, in Belarus, activities taken on behalf of an unregistered organization are punishable by law).
After the reading of the first volumes from the case containing bank statements and information from the Department of Financial Investigations about tax audits of Bialiatski, the defense raised objections. The lawyer Layevsky noted that the Public Prosecutor has yet to state the amount of money that is considered to be Bialiatski’s income. Moreover, Layevsky continued, the fact that Bialiatski withdrew money from the accounts does not prove that this money was his income.
The lawyer protests against the arrest of some assets, including the car and the summer residence, as they are co-owned by Ales and his wife Natallia.According to the counsel, the investigation didn’t implement the errand to find the property status of Ales Bialiatski and find who transferred money to his account, what for the money was used and whether Bialiatski was bringing the money to Belarus from abroad. The defense is interested in the implementation of these errands.
The prosecutor read aloud one of the 816 personal guarantees signed for Ales Bialiatski, which were attached to the case together with the refusal of the investigation to release Ales Bialiatski. The personal guarantees constitute two volumes of the case.The counsel states that in August he made a solicitation to the investigation to find who had transferred money to Ales Bialiatski’s account and to apply to these institutions with the request to tell the purpose of the transfers. However, the investigation rejected this motion.