Oct. 27 Preliminary Investigation to Be Completed

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–The preliminary investigation of the October 27 case will be completed within five days–the Chief of the Investigation Department–Military Prosecutor’s Office–chief of the investigation group Artak Haroutiunian announced.

He went on to say that the volume of charges in relation to the seven members of the group that perpetrated the terrorist act–as well as in the relation to Armen Haroutiunian has been changed and new charges have been brought against them. Yet–he did not elaborate as to the articles of the charges.

Haroutiunian also said that it will be before the completion of the preliminary investigation that the decision to send the case to court either in full volume or in separate proceedings will be made.

Fifty working days will be assigned for the study of the materials of the Oct. 27 case after the completion of the preliminary investigation. If no substantiated petitions for the continuation of the investigation are presented–the case will be immediately sent to court. Military Prosecutor Gagik Jhangirian–who is supervising the preliminary investigation–said in his interview to the Hayastani Hanrapetutiun newspaper.

He pointed out that the Investigation has not yet obtained any evidence concerning the leader of the crime. In his evidence–the principal defendant in the case–Nairi Hunanian–confirmed that he is the mastermind of the crime–and nobody abetted him.

Jhangirian gave assurances that the arrests and detentions were made in accordance with the spirit and letter of the law. He pointed out that the persons charged with aiding and abetting the terrorist act were released as defendants Nairi Hunanian–Karen Hunanian–and Edik Grigorian retracted their preliminary evidence. "The preliminary investigation must have the courage to change its assessmen’s–if these changes are based on the new evidence–but not defend its initial position at any price," Jhangirian said.

As regards the statement about physical pressure being exerted on the defendants–Jhangirian said–"when the defendants retract their own written evidence on the basis of which they were arrested–they must try to justify themselves." He added that in his evidence about his accomplices–Hunanian used his old connections–meetings and contacts with them–so it is impossible that somebody else should have prompted him that. "Maybe during the trial–Hunanian himself will tell the real reasons for his behavior," Jhangirian said. He said that during the preliminary investigation the investigatory group was challenged several times for this reason. The Prosecutor’s Office considered the argumen’s and rejected them as groundless.

When asked about the unjustifiable politicization of the preliminary investigation–Jhangirian said: "Naturally–some political forces were not against the investigation taking the course desired by them–and their political tasks being carried out by the investigatory group. But the operational investigative group was not led by them and did all its best to complete the case within the law. I think it succeeded."

Jhangirian denied the rumors that he reported to the Unity bloc and to Yerkrapah. He confessed that during the preliminary investigation he participated in the meetings of Unity and Yerkrapah at their invitations and provided limited information on the investigation. He pointed out that he also reported to the president on the investigation.

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