Maxim Yahnieshka is an antifascist from Grodno. On September 7, 2016, he was sentenced to 3 years of custodial restraint for a fight with right-wing hooligans (art. 186 Threat of homicide, malicious bodily harm or property destruction) and for robbing another hooligan of his hat (art. 206.2 Robbery with threat of violence + art. 339.1 Hooliganism).
It all started on April 1, 2015, when Maxim got beaten up by a right-wing gang so hard that he had to call the ambulance. Doctors saw multiple bodily injuries and called cops. Cops wanted to start a case on the account, trying to make Maxim make a statement against the perpetrators, but when he refused, they found the hooligans using surveillance cameras and made then accuse Maxim of other conflicts that happened before. Maxim changed his status from a victim to the accused.
On November 17, 2016 the higher court ruled to leave the sentence unchanged.
On December 12, 2016 he was transfered to an open-type penitentiary institution.
Custodial restraint in this case means an open-type penitentiary institution, where convicts are staying at certain dormitories, but no food or other services are provided for them by the administration - they have to get their own money in order to survive. In fact, all convicts are obliged to work, and usually it's the responsibility of the administration to provide working places for them. This is not the case in many such institutions, including one where Maxim is serving his time - he has spent 6 months there and until now was not offered any job.
So the bulk of supporting him lays of the shoulders of his family, who are also in a very bad situation right now. Maxim parents are divorced and the mother has to pay for privatising their flat, otherwise it's going to be confiscated by the state. She hasn't been able to find a job herself for a lon time and didn't manage to pay her bills. Also, Maxim's partner is pregnant which makes the whole situation even more difficult.
ABC-Belarus is supporting his legal expenses for appeals. We suggested to make a call for general support on our website, but the problem is that any time there is an article about him or his conditions online, he is threatened by the administration that they will find a reason to make him transfered to a prison and deprive him of the right to early release. This is why we don't publish this call openly, but rather circulating it throuhg friendly sources. We also think it is fine if the call will be published online in other languages on your sites.
If you feel like supporting Maxim, please send money to
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