On September 10, 2021 the Supreme Court will held a preliminary hearing on the claim to liquidation of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee.
On September 7, 2021 the BHC has received a statement of claim of the Ministry of Justice requesting the liquid of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee.
According to the statement of claim, the Ministry of Justice, as a result of investigative actions in an unnamed criminal case, received documents concerning 2 persons to whom the BHC allegedly paid fees for «services for long-term observation of the presidential elections in the Republic of Belarus in 2020». In support of this claim, the Ministry of Justice attached to the claim copies of 6 documents: contracts, receipts and transfer certificates.
The BHC does not know which criminal case they are referring to and against whom.
Clearly, it is unlawful to use criminal case files that have not yet been evaluated in a criminal trial.
In legal terms, if the Supreme Court recognizes that these documents, submitted in the form of copies, are true, then this decision will have adjudicative (prejudicial) value in the criminal case in which these documents are contained and in which individuals are accused.
Prejudice (res judicata) is the obligation for all courts considering the case to accept, without checking the evidence, the facts previously established by a court decision that entered into legal force in another case, i.e this decision will be binding on another court in a criminal case.
Thus, the decision of the Supreme Court on the liquidation of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee could violate the right to protection of persons involved in criminal proceedings.