The Yerevan Court of Appeals ruled on Tuesday to arrest ex-president Robert Kocharyan, granting the prosecutors’ appeals against a lower court’s decisions to release Kocharyan from custody. Judge Armen Danielyan, presiding over the high-profile trial, announced the decision in the absence of ex-president Kocharyan and the members of his defense team.
In a statement released today, the defense lawyers claimed judge Armen Danielyan didn’t allow them to present their positions in the previous hearing and immediately left for the deliberation room to decide on the matter in a ‘gross violation’ of the adversarial trial principle.
To remind, on 18 May, Davit Grigoryan, a Yerevan first instance court judge presiding over the ex-president’s case, suspended Kocharyan’s trial citing a “suspicion of discrepancy” between the Armenian Constitution and the charges brought against him two days after ordering his release from custody and forwarded the case to the Constitutional Court for a review.
The judge’s decisions were appealed by the Prosecutor General’s Office and the representatives of the legal successors of the victims of March 2008 post-election events Kocharyan is standing trial for.