Oleksandr Shumkov

Oleksandr Shumkov

Charges: participation in the activities of an organization recognized as terrorist in the territory of the Russian Federation

Court verdict: 4 years in a maximum-security prison

Oleksandr Shumkov was born on September 19, 1989, and lived in Kherson. Since the age of 17, he has been an active member of the Union of Ukrainian Youth in Ukraine in the Kherson region, popularizing the Ukrainian language, lecturing on the history of Ukraine, and organizing exhibitions on history and local lore.

During and after the Revolution of Dignity, Oleksandr Shumkov was in the ranks of the Right Sector and guarded the then leader of the organization, Dmytro Yarosh. After that, he went to serve in the Armed Forces.

On August 17, 2017, he did not return home after service. Relatives did not know what happened to him and where he was. And only on September 29, 2017, was he found in a Russian pre-trial detention center. The mother of the prisoner received a letter from the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation and the FSB, in which it was stated that her son was suspected of “participation in extremist organizations.

”In court, the defense voiced a detailed version of the capture of Oleksandr by the FSB. According to the defense, he, as an investigator of the military prosecutor's office of Ukraine, went to a meeting with an informant who was there to provide him with information about drug suppliers from the territory of the self-proclaimed “DPR”/ “LPR” to the Odesa and Dnipropetrovsk oblasts of Ukraine. Not far from the Russian-Ukrainian border, at the meeting place with the informant, the car was attacked. Oleksandr was immobilized by an electric stunning device and, while unconscious, taken to the territory of the Russian Federation.

In December 2018, a Russian court sentenced Oleksandr Shumkov to four years in prison. He is currently serving his sentence in the penitentiary #4 in the town of Torzhok in the Tver region. Liudmyla Shumkova says that in prison, Russian security forces tortured Oleksandr and threatened to kill him.

“When Oleksandr was handed over to the FSB and a continuous interrogation began, he was not allowed to sleep, eat or drink for several days,” says Liudmyla Shumkova, his aunt. “Sasha declared a hunger strike several times. When he was taken to a pre-trial detention center in Tver, physical torture was used. He was taken to some cramped room and beaten on the back and legs with a rolled rubber mat.”

Liudmyla also claims that since arriving at the #4 penitentiary in Torzhok, her nephew is constantly put under moral and psychological pressure. “FSB officers have been coming to his prison, forcing him to give false testimony against another Ukrainian prisoner, and said that he would not leave Russia alive, that he would not be included in any exchange list,” she said.

In prison, she says, Oleksandr began to experience severe headaches and back pain, and convulsions. He was not told what kind of medicine he received.