Vlad Chelakh was accused of the murder of 15 fellow border patrol rangers at the Arkan-Kergen Post and sentenced to life detention. After Vlad Chelakh’s public address to the President, Globalnews addressed his Mother, Svetlana Vaschenko, for comments.
Of course, we asked her a question, whether Vlad ever communicated to her the names of top-ranking persons, involved in the murder.
We Approached General Prosecution Earlier
— Svetlana, it is known that Vlad addressed the Generation Prosecution with requests to re-commission the case in connection with appearance of new facts. The body, however, acted, as if no such address was submitted. The reaction followed in one year, after Vlad’s open address to the President. How would You comment that?
— Vlad wrote to the General Prosecution, and the Supreme Court, and the President. The first two bodies answered that Vlad had no rights of such addresses, because the verdict had been issued already and it was up for Vlad’s advocate to submit such requests. Myself, and Vlad’s Grandfather, as well, wrote numerous letters to various bodies. Their answer was that we had no rights to write letters on behalf of my Son and it was him, who was supposed to do so. In other words, we were snap-shifted from one body to another with slim substantiations.
— Looks like, this time, Vlad’s letter found ways to the President. Vlad wrote he was ready to share the names of real murderers of those 15 border patrol rangers stationed in Arkan-Kergen Post. But his letter does not contain any of the names. Is it, that he wants to communicate those names to President, personally?
— Vlad said he wanted to shed light on what happened then. Most likely, he really had the intention to report to the President, because, as follows from his letter, he does not trust our system of justice.
Tired of Keeping Silence
— Why is it so, that 10 years after, he chose to tell the truth?
— I do not know what kept him shut for so long. During the court process, I told him many times to share names of murderers. Mass Media will confirm that.
May be, he was intimidated by investigation bodies. He indicated in his letter that they tortured him and administered psychotropic substances to have his “confession”. We all saw that famous video, in which he made his confessing testimony. I immediately understood, that he was under influence of narcotics or something else.
In the time of those events, Vlad was a 19-year immature boy, he was not ready to face the life of an adult man and did not understand things happening around him. It was of great stress. They accused him of murder he did not commit, and there were all those investigators and television cameras all around him…The whole society were keeping the track of the process. Now, that 10 years have passed, he is an grown-up boy. He realized many things and grew more decisive.
Manipulation or Truth?
— Some Arm-Chair Generals think that Vlad made his move, likewise did Rustam Ibragimov, individual accused of assassination of political activist Altynbek Sarsenbayev, to soften his detention regime in the maximum-security prison. Ibragimov also published his open address in Mass Media, whereby he promised to disclose the names of top-ranking individuals who ordered the assassination of Mr. Sarsenbayev, but with every new round of interrogation, he would change his testimony, as well as report different names of those, who gave the assassination order. So, there are concerns, that Vlad might, as well, attempt to manipulate the facts. What would You say to that?
— Vlad demanded case reinvestigation before. Nobody would listen. General Prosecution, courts…, even international human rights advocates would not listen. None of them! They just swept it all under the carpet! Although, there were numerous versions of what happened in Arkan-Kergen – terrorist attack and some VIP hunters.
Vlad killed nobody. And he declared it openly for many times in court. By the way, there was this room for Mass Media in the building of the Military Court, to which they would broadcast the live stream from the process. The thing is, that there was a repetitious problem with the sound during that broadcasting. Meanwhile, I was in the court-room. And I saw with my own eyes a court technician who would unplug some cable and then plug it back. Apparently, somebody was very unwilling to allow for the truth to be made public. I am confident that my Son is innocent. I know he is not capable of a manslaughter. They vilified my son and reduced him to dust. His only guilt is that he survived.
My Son Killed Nobody!
— One of the investigation versions was that those were bullying and trolling practices among rangers that motivated Vlad to go for a murder …
— Nothing of the kind ever happened there. And there was no sexual harassment. Those lads made friends. Vlad wrote me letters and he would tell me, in case there was something of the kind there.
— In parallel to the official version upheld by state bodies, there was another supposition that was worked on – VIP hunters involved in the murder. Do you know anything about that? Did Your Son mention any names of those murderers when You met him in jail?
— There was nothing of the kind he ever communicated to myself. If he did so, I would immediately make it publicly known, just for the sake of rescuing my Son. In the past 10 years, we were never allowed to have lengthy meetings – not more, than two hours per a meeting. Recently, I visited him, but we only discussed family. Other things are tabooed, he is not permitted to even tell me about who his cell-mates are. All is under total ban. That is a maximum-security prison, all inter-personal conversations are wiretapped. There always were armed security guards nearby my Son. And there would always be prison officials somewhere around us, that is why we could not have open talks, although I hoped that Vlad at last would tell me about what happened there.
My Son could not kill 15 rangers just by himself. They made a Terminator out of him. During the investigation and the court process, I was hinted to abstain from contacts with Mass Media and to not to share my own suppositions about what happened in Arkan-Kergen with them. Otherwise, my actions could affect my Son’s future. “If any versions, appear in press, come hell or high water, Vlad shall never make it outside” – they would tell me from the very beginning of the investigation. So, again, versions were numerous, but with no proof and evidence. I will only listen to Vlad, when he tells me what happened. Meanwhile, that is all nothing but suppositions.
Arkan-Kergen and Aksay Massacre
— Do you think that the Arkan-Kergen rampage and the Aksay Massacre are inter-connected?
— That is possible. The two crimes share one signature. In Aksay, victims were stabbed to death and their corpses were put on fire. I do not exclude, that the Arkan-Kergen murder was not a random event. Somebody wanted the investigators to dig in the wrong direction. If in Arkan-Kergen case Vlad was made a scape-goat, in the Aksay case they put the blame on the Son of the murder victim – Igor Zakharopulo. But they failed. Igor just disappeared and they declared religious fanatics, as those guilty.
I cherish hopes that once we will know the truth about what happened in Arkan-Kergen and my Son will be released.
— After the announcement of the court verdict, you three a handful of poppy seeds into the faces of prosecuting officials, thus casting a curse. In some time after that, there was an air accident killing almost all commanding officers of the Border Patrol Rangers. Colonel Turganbek Stambekov, Pavel Dotzenko, the Commander of the Ontustik Border Patrol Directorate and Commanders of the Korday and Saryagash Border Patrol Regiments. Many people in this country then thought it was Your curse …
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