Police officers in the Russian city of Yekaterinburg on the evening of February 8 detained Tajik national Khairiddin Odinayev at the porch of his apartment, took him to the forest and tried to extort money from him, Novaya Gazeta (New Newspaper) reported on February 9, citing migrants’ rights defender Valentina Chupik.  

On the evening of February 8, police officers reportedly stopped Odinayev at the porch of his apartment and began to ask “who he was and what he was doing here” and also asked to show documents.  

When Odinayev asked the policemen to introduce themselves and explain the reason for their demands, the policemen twisted his arms, forced into car and took to the police station in Verkh-Isetsk district, Chupik was cited as saying.

“I lodged a complaint with that police station.  I don't know what happened next, but the policemen, according to Odinayev, instead of the police station took him to the forest, where they intimidated him and extorted money from him.  Odinayev answered them that he was not a rich man, so he would not pay them, and he sees no reason for this.  After this, the policemen forced him into car again and to police station No 8,” Ms. Chupik was quoted as saying.  

Odinayev reportedly managed to tell Chupik that at the police station he was told to knee to apologize for his complaints to human rights defenders.   When he refused to do so, they threatened him with 15 days of arrest. 

“At 10:00 am Yekaterinburg time, Odinayev got in touch with his wife and told her that they took off his shoes and jacket and kicked him out on a cold concrete floor and also refused to go to the toilet.  He said he is suspected of “disobedience to lawful orders of police officers.”   He was taken to court, but the trial did not take place and Odinayev was taken back to police station No 8,” Ms. Chupik said.   

According to her, Odinayev is not allowed to file a petition for the admission of defense lawyer to the court and disobedience to lawful orders of police officers, his residence permit in Russia can be canceled, after which he could face deportation to Tajikistan.