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Tatar Human Rights Lawyer Files Lawsuit Against Police

Rustem Valiullin (file photo)

Rustem Valiullin (file photo)

A lawyer inthe Russian republic of Tatarstan specializing in human rights and freedom of speech cases has filed a lawsuit against police, after he says they beat him while in detention, RFE/RL's Tatar-Bashkir Service reports.

Rustem Valiullin was released by police in the town of Almetyevsk on August 4 after being detained for two days. He said he filed a lawsuit alleging that he was beaten and illegally fingerprinted while in jail.

Valiullin was detained by traffic police late on August 2 after videotaping police as they detained his client for a traffic violation. He told RFE/RL he was beaten by an officer from the counterextremism department while a second policeman threatened to kill him.

Valiullin appeared in court on August 3 and was fined 500 rubles ($16.6). He was then released, but was detained again almost immediately for refusing to be fingerprinted.

Valiullin argued that since he was not charged with any crime it was illegal for police to have him fingerprinted.

Rafis Latypov, head of the Kama human rights organization in Izhevsk, in the neighboring republic of Udmurtia, went to Almetyevsk to try to secure Valiullin's release. But Valiullin wasn't informed about Latypov's visit.