Helsinki Citizens' Assembly-Vanadzor

“Armavir” penitentiary institution convict Armen Shamiryan was released ahead of time

February 5, 2019

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Yesterday, on February 4, 2019, Armavir region General Jurisdiction Court, presided by Vahe Khalatyan, decided to release convict Armen Shamiryan – who was sentenced to imprisonment of 5.5 years in 2015 – ahead of time. A. Shamiryan’s interests were represented in the court by Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly Vanadzor lawyer Arayik Zalyan.


Although the RA Ministry of Justice penitentiary service head A. Mkhoyan characterized A. Shamiryan’s behavior as negative and did not find it expedient to present him for release ahead of time, RA Ministry of Justice probation service expressed the reverse opinion and assessed his behavior as not so negative, also took his health problems and the fact of his repenting the crime into consideration and concluded that it was expedient to present him for conditional release ahead of time or replacing with a lenient punishment.


Based on these two opinions, on January 10, 2019, “Armavir” penitentiary institution head Kh. Harutyunyan, with the agreement of the convict, decided to make a petition to the court with the matter of releasing ahead of time or replacing his punishment with a lenient one.


Prosecutor A. Zakaryan objected to the petition presented substantiating his opinion by the fact that Armen Shamiryan had earlier been convicted a few times.


A. Shamiryan’s defender in the court Arayik Zalyan mentioned, among other things, that in the penitentiary service conclusion, A. Shamiryan was characterized well by all criteria and the negative conclusion was given only on the grounds of a few earlier convictions. This means that the content of the final conclusion of penitentiary service contradicts to the characterization by separate indicators. Besides, the fact that A. Shamiryan has earlier convictions cannot have an impact on the making of the decision to release him ahead of time, since it is not permissible to convict a person twice for one action. Moreover, he did not manifest a negative behavior while serving his punishment.


After hearing the opinions of the parties, in the court session at “Armavir” penitentiary institution, the court decided to uphold the petition and release A. Shamiryan ahead of time.

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