18 Jan 2018 10:11

Alleged Russian hacker Nikulin denied specialized medical aid at Czech prison - newspaper

MOSCOW. Jan 18 (Interfax) - The health of alleged Russian hacker Yevgeny Nikulin detained in the Czech Republic at the request of U.S. security services has seriously exacerbated yet he is denied specialized medical aid at the Czech Pankrac prison, the Izvestia newspaper said on Thursday citing Nikulin's lawyer Vladimir Makeyev.

"This is an alarming situation, and I am seriously worried about the health of Yevgeny who has a stomach and kidney condition. He has been incarcerated for over a year and regularly complains of sharp pain. He needs a particular diet. He was assigned a diet in prison without a proper examination, but this diet only made his condition worse. It may help someone but it is a death sentence for Yevgeny," the newspaper quoted Makeyev as saying.

The lawyer said his client "was depressed because he was constantly experiencing pressure."

"He has been practically isolated. He has also been subjected to punitive psychiatry and pushed into giving false evidence of the alleged interference in the U.S. election campaign. No doubt this affects the general condition of the man who is trying to prove his innocence," Makeyev said.

In turn, Alexei Kolmakov, the press secretary of the Russian Embassy to the Czech Republic, told the newspaper that Nikulin "was receiving comprehensive consular support."

"Our officers are staying in touch with the detained Russian citizen and his lawyers, as well as with the Czech authorities and the prison administration. We will continue doing everything we can within the framework of the Consular Convention to ensure the lawful interests of the Russian citizen, including the medical assistance he requires," Kolmakov said.

Representatives of the Prague Pankrac prison, where the Russian citizen is kept, refused to answer any questions regarding that case, Izvestia said.

The Prague City Court decided in May 2017 that the Russian citizen could be extradited either to Washington or to Moscow, Izvestia said. Nikulin's defense appealed the ruling. Nikulin said multiple times he wanted to be extradited to Russia, but the Supreme Court in Prague dismissed his appeal on November 24, 2017.