Thursday, April 15, 2021

Inspector said that Ihor “was mistreated”, but that he died of epilepsy


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The prosecutor who received the communication of the death of Ihor Homeniuk declared on Wednesday that an inspector from the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF) told him that the body of the Ukrainian citizen “was a little mistreated”, but that the death would be related to epileptic seizure.

Alexandra Catatau was speaking at the trial on the alleged murder of Ihor Homeniuk at the Temporary Installation Center (CIT) of the Aliens and Borders Service (SEF) at Lisbon airport, after being listed as a witness by Ricardo Sá Fernandes (lawyer for defendant Bruno Sousa) for clarify whether there had been any attempt to conceal from the Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP) what had happened with the death of the Ukrainian passenger.

The magistrate reported that, on the afternoon of March 12, 2020, she received a phone call from a SEF inspector to inform her of the passenger’s death, and was told that “the death should have been for epilepsy“Because the day before the Ukrainian citizen“ would have already gone to the hospital ”for reasons related to epilepsy.

The prosecutor also said in court that the SEF inspector informed him that the deceased “I was a little mistreated” and that, when asking questions about this fact, he obtained as an answer, from the same inspector, that there had been disrespect with the passenger and that there was a need to handle him.

The Public Prosecutor said that, given what was said by the inspector, she requested that such facts should be included in the report that the SEF would send to her, and that, upon receiving the file in writing, she ordered the subsequent autopsy to be carried out by the body. Ihor Homeniuk.

The prosecutor’s statements in court boiled down to a question formulated by Ricardo Sá Fernandes, with the other interveners not having asked more questions to the prosecutor who was on duty on the day of Ihor Homeniuk’s death.

At the end of the hearing and outside the court, Ricardo Sá Fernandes clarified to journalists that the intention of calling the prosecutor’s testimony was to ascertain whether there had been “Hiding something” related to the procedures following the death of the Ukrainian passenger.

According to the defense lawyer, the prosecutor / witness “described in terms of perfect normality what had happened”, which, in his opinion, is “effectively the opposite” of what he intended to transmit, that is, that there was an attempt to hide what happened to Ihor Homeniuk.

Asked whether, given the information that Ihor Homeniuk’s body was “a bit mistreated”, the magistrate should not have gone to the scene or alerted PJ before the body was removed, Ricardo Sá Fernandes replied: “No way . It was order the autopsy and as a result, define what had to be done ”.

Still in statements to journalists, the lawyer considered that “the prosecutor acted with all diligence and did what he had to do“, Noting that for the defense, what deserves criticism is“ what happened after the autopsy, because not all the tests that should have been done ”, as well as having authorized the cremation of the body, a situation that“ should not to have happened”.

During the session, inspector Ricardo Giriarte was also heard, among other witnesses, who was the one who informed the MP about the death of Ihor Homeniuk, and this member of the SEF said that he also communicated that there were bruises on Ihor’s arms, which had been tied up due to his unstable behavior.

Ricardo Giriarte reported to the panel of judges that, before the death of the passenger, he found Ihor lying down, in a lateral position, noting that “Was pissed”, with “eyes open” e still “breathing”. He also said that he had exchanged a few words in Russian that he knew with the passenger, but that this “no longer reacted”, the Ukrainian citizen being “tied to the feet and hands”.

He also described the subsequent events, including Ihor’s cardiorespiratory arrest and unsuccessful attempts by the Red Cross and later by INEM to revive him.

During the autopsy, the doctor at the National Institute of Forensic Medicine (INCML) when he saw the body of Ihor, 40, with signs of violence (bruises and abrasions), immediately alerted the PJ, having concluded that the Ukrainian passenger died of asphyxiation slow after suffering multiple rib fractures motivated by “external energy”.

According to the Public Ministry (MP), in March 2020, the Ukrainian citizen Ihor Homeniuk, was taken to the room of the Establishment Equated to the Installation Center, at Lisbon Airport, to wait for boarding a flight to Istanbul, having refused to do so.

In view of the turmoil he presented, Ihor Homenyuk ended up being isolated from the remaining foreign passengers, where he remained until the following day, having been “tied in the legs and arms ”, but ended up being“ just immobilized at the ankles ”.

The inspectors, who are now being accused, went to the room where the citizen was, handcuffed his hands behind his back, bandaged his elbows with bandages and delivered an indeterminate number of punches and kicks in the body.

Hours later, and after the victim did not react, INEM and an emergency medical vehicle were eventually activated, and the crew’s service doctor checked the death of the Ukrainian citizen.

The assaults committed by SEF inspectors, who acted in concert of efforts and intentions, provoked Ihor Homenyuk “several traumatic injuries who were the direct cause ”of his death.

Three SEF inspectors – Bruno Sousa, Duarte Laja and Luís Silva – accused of the qualified homicide of Ihor Homenyuk are in house arrest since his arrest, on March 30th.


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