Future defence lawyers to investigate cases of life prisoners


The Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union and Ukraine’s Bar Academy have begun a joint educational project aimed at showing future defence lawyers what problems can arise when seeking justice for their clients, both from the courts and the law enforcement bodies.

For the first time in Ukraine, students together with lecturers will analyze real criminal cases of life prisoners whose guilt has aroused doubts.

The first meeting of the project took place on 13 March 2013.  During the meeting, a documentary entitled “Oleksandr Rafalsky.  Deprived of freedom for life” was shown. The film was based on material from a journalist investigation and analysis of Rafalsky’s contentious criminal case/ 

The meeting resulted in 11 students expressing the wish to join the project. Under the guidance of lecturers two working groups will be created. Each group will receive material of two criminal cases which they will be investigating and deciding whether in their view the sentence was fair. 

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