A crime lair has been formed in the Mataghis military unit of Martakert region. Criminal cases are being investigated against some of the officers, others are convicted of various crimes, but are not even dismissed and continue to perform their official duties. Violence against soldiers is a part of their job. They torture military servicemen, use sadistic penalties against them. These “deeds” are led by the commander of the military unit Armen Gyozalyan.

Chief of the Rifle Battalion Staff, Deputy of Gyozalyan, Major Arthur Fahradyan, who is the right hand of the commander, has the reputation of being the most brutal officer. He was born in Armavir region. Lives in Artsakh, and is single. The 31-year-old Major has already appeared before the court twice, but the military prosecutor’s office of the third garrison, judges of Syunik court Gnel Gasparyan and David Sargsyan, have shown evidently mild attitude towards the criminal.

On the night of June 12, 2018, Major Fahradyan forced the soldiers to lie down and walked over them. In this way the Major punished the boys for having eaten in the bedroom after the “Sleep” command.

Capturing the boys, the Major beat three of them– Mkhitar Sargsyan, Sergey Grigoryan and Narek Poghosyan. “With two open palms he struck the right and left areas of Junior Sergeant Sergey Grigoryan’s face, pushed his chest with his hand, and once hit the left area of Junior Sergeant Mkhitar Sargsyan’s face with an open palm, causing physical pain to them,” states the verdict.

But these actions did not satisfy the Major. At 07:30 AM, he made Narek Poghosyan, Shahen Poghosyan, Tevan Hambardzumyan, Tigran Mkhitaryan, Davit Chatyan and Khoren Gabrielyan  stand near the unit’s building and with a plastic bottle hit several times Poghosyan’s face and shoulder, causing him physical injuries. The others were given a “lie-down” command and the officer walked over them, causing physical injuries.

On August 22, 2018, a signature of non-departure was taken from Arthur Hayk Fahradyan as a precautionary measure.

The Military Prosecutor’s Office did not even isolate the Major during the six-month investigation. They only took a signature about not leaving the country. The mild attitude towards the sadist Major was showed by the Deputy Military Prosecutor of the 3rd Garrison Boris Bakhshiyan. In May of this year the latter became a judge.

Artur Fahradyan was charged under Article 358.1, point 3, part 2, and Article 358.1, point 3, parts 2 and 3 of the Criminal Code of Armenia for committing violent acts against a subordinate or threatening to commit such acts by using a weapon or another object used as a weapon against two or more persons.

In February, Goris Court Judge David Sargsyan rushed to hear the case. He scheduled only one trial for February 19, and sentenced him to four years in prison on the same day, but, given the merits of the Major, the numerous awards and positive assessments by Commander Gyozalyan, he decided to apply conditional sentencing — probation.

The Major behaved normally just for a few months. This year he again beat a soldier, violating a court-imposed probation.

According to the prosecution, “Artur Fahradyan was charged for assaulting…has beaten a subordinate private B. Hovhannisyan causing him physical pain.”

One court hearing on the case took place. The second one is scheduled for August 28. And, again, neither the Third Garrison Military Prosecutor’s Office nor Sisian Court Judge Gnel Gasparyan have isolated him.

They just took a signature about not leaving the country. And commander Gyozalyan is in no hurry to get rid of his right hand Fahradyan’s work with the soldiers. On the contrary, he has placed him in a training battalion. Why, for what purpose, and with whom and for whose personal interest is a sadist, a major immersed in criminal offenses, sent to a training battalion?

How does Fahradyan, the head of the Rifle Battalion, continue to hold the office after all this? Why doesn’t the commander of the military unit Armen Gyozalyan raise question about his resignation? Spokesman for the Ministry of Defense Artsrun Hovhannisyan responded to these questions from Forrighs: “Due to a conditional article on hitting a soldier, Gyozalyan is not the one to decide whether or not to fire him.”

This at least means that the officers who beat-crush soldiers are under special protection of the Ministry of Defense and the military unit, and, for some reasons, are encouraged by them.

 Today the Major feels completely protected by the Prosecutor’s Office, the courts, his commander Colonel Armen Gyozalyan, Defense Minister David Tonoyan… In the meantime, criminal incidents continue to take place in Mataghis military unit.

Syuzan Simonyan

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