Persecution of lawyers in Belarus after the 2020 elections
Updated on November 21, 2022
Please note that the list is regularly updated. If we missed someone, please contact us at defendersbelarus@protonmail.com

The information is presented according to several categories:
  • Lawyers under criminal prosecution (10)
  • Lawyers deprived of licenses due to misconduct incompatible with the lawyer’s title (8)
  • Lawyers deprived of the right to the profession based on the results of certification / recertification by the Qualification commission under the Ministry of Justice (38)
  • Lawyers expelled from the Bar by decision of the Disciplinary Commission of the Territorial Bar Association (Council of the Territorial Bar Association) (17)

At the moment, 2 more lawyers have been detained and are behind bars under administrative arrest. Our project will monitor the situation, data about them is not included in the statistics.
The period prior to and after the 2020 Belarus presidential election was marked by unprecedented pressure on representatives of civil society, including lawyers. Defenders of civil society activists, members of the political opposition, and protesting citizens were not only hindered in their work but also subjected to arbitrary detention, criminal and administrative prosecution, deprivation of the attorney title — in violation of international standards on the legal profession, reports and recommendations of international organizations, NGOs and international professional associations of lawyers that highlight the problems with the Bar and legal aid in the Republic of Belarus.

We’re going to cover several examples of harassment of lawyers for their legal assistance in the election process and election-related criminal cases.
Who is included in the list
1. Lawyers deprived of their status by a decision of the Ministry of Justice — those lawyers whose license was terminated directly by the Ministry as a licensing body, and who, according to the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice, committed “a misconduct incompatible with the lawyer’s title”. (8)

2. Lawyers that were disqualified and deprived of their title as a result of ordinary or extraordinary certification in the Ministry of Justice.
Both procedures are unlawful due to their incompatibility with the principles of the independence of lawyers and the legal profession, according to which the state is not the right actor to assess an attorney's compliance with ethical standards and expertise. For this reason, the deprivation of the status of a lawyer as a result of these procedures is unlawful, regardless of any other circumstances.

3. Lawyers deprived of their title due to the exemption from the Territorial Bar Association by the disciplinary body of the bar, when:
• the circumstances of the exemption indicate that the disciplinary body did not act independently;
• and/or the disciplinary procedure violated fair trial guarantees;
• and/or a lawyer is deprived of their title for the lawful exercise of their professional duties, their human rights (freedom of expression, assembly);
• the disciplinary body has abused the Rules of professional ethics by considering the lawyer’s action an ethical violation when it’s not the case;
• or the disciplinary penalty is disproportionate.

Conclusions as to the biased and unfair application of disciplinary measures are made on the basis of information from open sources, as well as on the basis of information sent to us.
Attorneys under criminal prosecution:
Attorneys deprived of licenses due to misconduct incompatible with the lawyer’s title:
Lawyers deprived of the right to the profession based on the results of certification / recertification by the Qualification commission under the Ministry of Justice:
Lawyers expelled from the Bar by decision of the Disciplinary Commission of the Territorial Bar Association (Council of the Territorial Bar Association):
Persecution of lawyers after the 2010 elections
Previous cases of mass persecution of lawyers who defended political opponents of the current government took place in 2010. Human rights activists link the deprivation of licenses of six attorneys to political persecution. You can read more in the article. This year the UN Human Rights Committee is going to look into a complaint of one of the attorneys, Oleg Ageev, who was deprived of his license after the 2010 elections in violation of his rights. Details on how to file a complaint and recommendations on its content can be found in the article.

Lawyers under criminal prosecution
Maxim Znak
An attorney, partner, and head of the dispute resolution practice at the Law Office “Borovtsov & Salei”. He was a member of the Minsk Regional Bar Association (MRBA).

Maxim was marked by international rankings and legal guides (in particular, The Chambers Guide, Legal 500, IFLR1000 and Who's Who Legal). He possesses a Ph.D. in Law.

While practicing law, he taught at the Faculty of Law of the Belarusian State University and was the author and lecturer of the course "Legal environment for business" of the MBA program of the Belarusian State University.

On May 28, 2020, he joined presidential candidate Viktor Babariko’s team to provide legal assistance on electoral law issues. In the headquarters, he was the head of the legal department.

On June 20, 2020, Maxim Znak, on behalf of Viktor Babariko, by proxy, submitted to the Central Election Commission (CEC) an application for the registration of Viktor Babariko as a presidential candidate, which allowed Viktor, even while in custody, to maintain his candidacy in the electoral race.

Subsequently, Maxim Znak represented Viktor Babariko at a CEC meeting, where the issue of registering the latter as a candidate for the presidency of the Republic of Belarus was considered, and also, on the basis of powers duly executed, filed a complaint on behalf of Viktor Babariko to the Supreme Court of the Republic of Belarus against the decision of the CEC to refuse Viktor’s registration as a presidential candidate; Maxim held public explanations of the legislation on electoral issues — both for members of the initiative group and Belarusian citizens on YouTube.

On August 10, 2020, Maxim Znak, as Svetlana Tikhanovskaya’s attorney, appealed the results of the presidential election to the CEC, and on August 21, 2020, Maxim Znak, on behalf of S. Tikhanovskaya, filed a complaint to the Supreme Court of Belarus on considering the August 9 elections invalid, providing 25 document folders indicating the grounds for non-recognition of the results of the election.

Maxim Znak, on behalf of S. Tikhanovskaya, participated in the formation of the Coordinating Council in August 2020 and was elected to its Presidium.

On September 9, 2020, Maxim was taken into custody. He was charged under Part 3 of Art. 361 (public calls for actions aimed at causing harm to the national security of the Republic of Belarus) of the Criminal Code. As a sign of disagreement, M. Znak began a hunger strike.

Maxim Znak was defended by lawyers Dmitry Laevsky, Yevgeny Pylchenko, Nadezhda Znak and Sergey Zikratsky.

Human rights organizations recognized Maxim Znak as a political prisoner, and INGO Amnesty International recognized him as a prisoner of conscience.

International professional associations of lawyers (ABA, CCBE) and human rights organizations have repeatedly sent appeals in defense of Maxim and the inadmissibility of persecuting lawyers for political reasons.

On February 10, 2021, Maxim was charged with conspiracy to seize state power by unconstitutional means (Part 1 of Art. 357 of the Criminal Code), as well as with the creation and leadership of an extremist group (Part 1 of Art. 361-1 of the Criminal Code). This was done in addition to the initial accusation under Part 3 of Art. 361 of the Criminal Code.

On March 15, 2021, the defense of Maxim Znak appealed against the charges brought against him for conspiracy to seize power by unconstitutional means.

On May 7, 2021, Maxim’s defenders announced the end of the preliminary investigation. All efforts and motions of the defense to terminate the criminal prosecution against Maxim, as well as all defense appeals against the charges brought against him, were rejected.

On July 5, 2021, the criminal case on charges against Maxim Znak and Maria Kolesnikova under part 1 of Art. 357, part 3 of Art. 361, part 1 of Art. 361-1 of the Criminal Code was submitted for consideration to the Minsk Regional Court.

On August 4, 2021, the trial began in Maxim Znak and Maria Kolesnikova’s case. The court was held behind closed doors. Relatives of Kolesnikova and Znak were not allowed into the courtroom.

On September 6, 2021, the Minsk Regional Court sentenced Maria Kolesnikova to 11 years in a penal colony, and Maxim Znak to 10 years in a maximum security prison. On the morning of September 6, queues of those wishing to get into the court lined up for the announcement of the verdict, but not everyone was able to get into the hall, and foreign diplomats were not allowed in by order of the Belarusian MFA.

Maxim Znak's defense declared that the conviction was unlawful and groundless and appealed against the verdict.

December 10, 2021, Maxim Znak received the Human Rights Award 2021 from the Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE Human Rights Award 2021).

On December 24, 2021, the Supreme Court considered the appeals of Maxim Znak and his defenders and upheld the verdict.

Since January 2022, Maxim Znak has been serving his sentence in penal colony No. 3 (Vitba village, Vitebsk region).

In May 2022, Maxim Znak was included by the State Security Committee in the List of organizations and individuals involved in terrorist activities.

On December 24, 2021, Maxim Znak was expelled from the Minsk Regional Bar Association in accordance with the decision of the meeting of the MRBA Council dated January 19, 2022, based on par. 11 part 1 Art. 74 of the Charter of the Minsk Regional Bar Association and Art. 24 of the Law on the Bar in connection with the entry into force of the court verdict on the conviction of an intentional crime.

On May 21, 2022, the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention communicated to the authorities of the Republic of Belarus its decision (A/HRC/WGAD/2022/24) regarding Maxim’s deprivation of liberty. In this decision, the UN Working Group concluded that:
  • the imprisonment of Maxim Znak was carried out in violation of articles 7, 9, 10, 11, 19, 20 and 21 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and articles 9, 14, 19, 22, 25 and 26 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and is arbitrary;
- the arrest and detention of Maxim Znak had no legal basis and resulted from the peaceful exercise of his rights under articles 19, 22 and 25 of the Covenant (freedom of expression, freedom of association, freedom to participate in the conduct of public affairs);
- the arrest of Maxim Znak is based on discrimination on a political basis and status as an attorney for a political opposition party, in violation of article 26 of the Covenant;
- the treatment to which Maxim Znak was subjected appears to be an act of retaliation for his active work and is incompatible with the international legal obligations of Belarus;
- no legal proceedings against Maxim Znak were to be held;
- Maxim Znak must be released immediately and unconditionally.

However, the authorities refused to release Maxim Znak; as of September 2022, he remains in a penal colony.
Illia Salei
Together with Maxim Znak, in May 2020, he joined the headquarters of presidential candidate Viktor Babaryka as a lawyer. He also provided legal assistance to Maria Kolesnikova, a member of the opposition Coordinating Council, and Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, a presidential candidate.

On September 9, 2020, he was detained on suspicion of committing a crime under Part 3 of Art. 361 (Calls for actions aimed at causing harm to the national security of the Republic of Belarus) of the Criminal Code. On September 11, 2020, he was taken into custody and placed in Minsk pre-trial Detention center №1.
Human rights organizations recognized Illia Salei as a political prisoner. Amnesty International recognized him as a prisoner of conscience.

On September 18, 2020, he was charged under Part 3 of Art. 361 (Calls for actions aimed at causing harm to the national security of the Republic of Belarus) of the Criminal Code.

On October 16, 2020, the preventive measure against Illia was changed to home confinement.

On April 16, 2021, the preventive measure was changed to bail.

The international legal community has repeatedly sent appeals in defense of Ilia Salei, stressing the inadmissibility of prosecution of lawyers for political reasons.

The Belarusian Helsinki Committee called on the UN Human Rights Committee to take urgent action in connection with the detention of Illia Salei and send an urgent message to the Government of Belarus on the need to comply with the basic principles of the legal profession.

In August 2021, Illia Salei secretly left Belarus. The bail money is turned into state income. Illia Salei was arrested in absentia.

On October 18, 2021, he was expelled from the MRBA due to the termination of his law practice as part of the law firm, which, in its turn, is due to the politically motivated criminal prosecution and changes to the legislation of the Republic of Belarus regulating the Bar.

At present, Illia Salei remains in the status of the accused.
Alexander Danilevich
May 20, 2022
Alexander Danilevich was detained and placed in the KGB pre-trial detention center. Earlier, the lawyer was subject to disciplinary action for signing an anti-war petition, and his contract was not renewed with the Faculty of International Relations of the Belarusian State University, where he had taught for 20 years.

June 30, 2022
The Minsk City Court rejected the defense's complaint against the decision of the district court, which refused to cancel the detention of the attorney.

The trial per se was held behind closed doors. Based on the information from the desk containing the schedule of sessions, it became known that the attorney is charged under paragraph 3 of Article 361 of the Criminal Code ("calls for actions aimed at inflicting damage to the national security of the Republic of Belarus, including the use of restrictive measures (sanctions)", or "distribution of materials containing such calls").

Alexander is declared to be a political prisoner.
Vitaly Braginets
On Monday morning, May 23, 2022, KGB officers detained lawyer Vitaly Braginets, who was actively defending persons accused within politically motivated cases, including the criminal case of lawyer Andrei Mochalov. On May 25, 2022, his administrative case was considered in the Minsk Partizansky District Court (by judge N. Dedkova). As it turned out, a protocol was drafted against Vitaly stating that he was taken to the police department of the Partizansky district "for a check as to the involvement in protest activities", after which the attorney allegedly started cursing, screaming, trying to leave the police department, expressed disobedience to the lawful requests of a police officer (Article 24.3 of the Code of the Republic of Belarus on Administrative Offenses).

The court considered the offense to be proven and sentenced Vitaly to administrative detention for 15 days.

When interviewing witnesses in court, Braginets’ defender asked the witness: "You claim that Vitaly Braginets has tried to escape. Do you insist on it?", to which the witness replied: "Yes, because it was a movement, smoothly turning into a run, towards the open gate. And at the same time, the citizen was addressing those standing at the bus stop. He shouted that he was illegally detained."

It is noteworthy that the lawyer was brought to administrative responsibility prior to the court session, within which he was supposed to defend the attorney Andrey Mochalov, who was deprived of his status in 2021 and accused of using forged documents. As a result, on June 6, 2022, when the trial began, the court refused to postpone the hearing until the expiration of the detention period for Vitaly Braginets and forcibly appointed A. Mochalov a defense lawyer without consulting the accused (Mochalov) himself.
Braginets was supposed to serve his sentence and be released on the morning of June 7, but he was again brought to administrative responsibility with the appointment of administrative detention.

As it became known later, a criminal case was initiated against him, and as of September 2022, he remains in custody. In July 2022, Vitaly Braginets was declared a political prisoner.

Anastasia Lazarenko
On June 3, 2022, a “video of repentance” appeared in the law enforcement channels with Anastasia Lazarenko, a lawyer practicing within the legal advice office No. 2 of the Moskovsky district of Minsk.
The video shows that the security forces from the Main Directorate for Combating Organized Crime and Corruption broke into the house with weapons, and knocked out the door and window. The attorney was detained on June 2, 2022.
It is reported that criminal proceedings have been initiated against her under Art. 130 § 3 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus – allegedly for passing the information about security forces and judges to telegram channels. Art. 130 § 3 of the Criminal Code prescribes up to 12 years of imprisonment.
Andrei Mochalov
On June 18, 2021, it became known that lawyer Andrei Mochalov was expelled from the Bar. The reason was the comment that he gave on the case of his client Olga Zolotar, who said that after her arrest, violence was used against her by law enforcement agencies. The disciplinary commission considered the lawyer's comment to be a violation of professional ethics. On May 27, 2021, the MRBA Disciplinary Commission issued a ruling to bring Mochalov to disciplinary liability. Since Mochalov did not receive any notification that the MRBA Council had made any decision on the basis of this ruling, he proceeded with his professional activities and on June 18 appeared in court to defend Olga Sineleva in a criminal case. During the proceeding, the court received a letter from the MRBA Council stating that on May 31 the Council decided to expel Mochalov from the Bar.

On June 16, 2022, the court of the Leninsky district of Minsk announced the verdict in the criminal case against the disbarred attorney. Judge Tatsiana Shotik found him guilty under part 1 of Article 380 of the Criminal Code — it is claimed that the lawyer had forged a warrant for participation in the criminal trial, although he allegedly knew that by that time he had been expelled from the Minsk Regional Bar Association. The former lawyer was sentenced, under the prosecutor’s request, to two years with referral to an open-type correctional institution.

Mochalov's defender Vitaly Braginets has been under arrest since May 25, so he did not manage to get to any of his client's trials. The transcript of the entire process in the criminal case can be found at the link [written in Russian].

In 2020 and 2021 Andrei Mochalov defended independent media journalists, activists, and political prisoners in courts.

Yulia Yurgilevich
Attorney Yulia Yurgilevich was detained. According to mass media reports, her house in Grodno was searched.

In February 2022, lawyer Yulia Yurgilevich was expelled from the Grodno Bar Association. She defended political prisoners Ales Pushkin, Artem Boyarsky, Igor Bantser, Andrei Osievich, and Andrei Sokolovsky.

Andrey Skurat, the deputy prosecutor of the Grodno region, reportedly expressed doubts as to Yulia’s expertise (the attorney has been working since 2004). He filed a complaint, which was admitted by the Council of the Grodno Regional Bar Association. The Council decided to expel Yurgilevich from the Bar "for unprofessionalism." For the previous 18 years of her work, there were no complaints about the work of the attorney.

Under the preliminary information, the attorney left Belarus in February but has now returned.

Dmitry Pigul
According to human rights defenders, attorney Dmitry Pigul was arrested in Minsk on September 28th. In the evening, he was detained at his home by KGB officers. Presumably, Dmitry was charged under Art. 407 of the Criminal Code (disclosure of the preliminary investigation or a closed court session data). According to preliminary information, the attorney is currently in the KGB pre-trial detention center.

Dmitry was an attorney at the trial in the “Busly liaciać” case, the sentences in the latter were handed down the day before the attorney's detention (the upper threshold is 15 years in prison). Furthermore, he defended the political prisoner Elena Malinovskaya, who was convicted together with Anatoly Latushko (cousin of a Belarusian politician and diplomat Pavel Latushko).
Mikhail Makarov
Attorney Mikhail Makarov defended Mikita Dranets, a political prisoner in the “Revolutionary Action” case.

According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the accused communicated the personal data of employees of the Main Directorate for Combating Organized Crime and Corruption (GUBOPiK), the Investigative Committee, the Prosecutor's Office, and judges that had heard the "Revolutionary Action" criminal case to the “extremist” Telegram channel. (Art. 407 of the Criminal Code).

He is also charged under Art. 342 of the Criminal Code (Active participation in group actions that grossly violate public order).
Anastasia Saganovich
Attorney Anastasia Saganovich has also defended political prisoners in the “Revolutionary Action” case.

According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, she communicated the personal data of employees of the Main Directorate for Combating Organized Crime and Corruption (GUBOPiK), the Investigative Committee, the Prosecutor's Office, and judges that had heard the "Revolutionary Action" criminal case to the “extremist” Telegram channel. (Art. 407 of the Criminal Code).

Anastasia is also charged under Art. 342 of the Criminal Code (Active participation in group actions that grossly violate public order).

Deprivation of license in connection with the misconduct incompatible with the lawyer’s title
Alexander Pylchenko
See the detailed chronicle of the revocation of Alexander Pylchenko’s license here.

Pylchenko was an attorney for Viktor Babariko, the 2020 presidential elections ex-candidate, as well as for Babariko’s staff coordinator, Maria Kolesnikova, who is also a member of the Presidium of the Coordination Council.
On 15 October 2020, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy of the Ministry of Justice recommended revoking a lawyer's license. By a decision of the collegium of the Ministry of Justice of October 16, the validity of Alexander’s lawyer license was suspended.
The essence of the claims against the attorney is connected with the content of his interview with the T*T.BY news portal. In the August 14th, 2020 publication, Alexander Pylchenko expressed his views on the actions to be taken by the Prosecutor General and other officials as to the evidence published in the media about the use of torture against detainees from 9 to 12 August in the police departments and detention facilities, as well as information about election fraud. The lawyer recommended Prosecutor General of Belarus to initiate criminal proceedings into beatings of protesters, torture, cruel and inhuman treatment of detainees. The lawyer also noted that the Prosecutor General’s Office should have removed the Minister of Internal Affairs, his deputies, and the head of the detention facilities from office until the inspection of their involvement or non-involvement in the abovementioned incidents had been completed.

According to the Ministry of Justice, Alexander Pylchenko "had made incompetent remarks in the media and actually called for illegal actions, including the “blocking and disarming of military units”.
International professional organizations of lawyers have repeatedly sent letters to the Belarusian authorities supporting Aliaksandr Pylchenko and demanding an end to the politically motivated persecution.

Liudmila Kazak
See the detailed chronicle of Liudmila’s persecution here.

Liudmila has defended Maria Kolesnikova. On September 24, 2020, she was abducted by unknown individuals in Minsk, and taken to the Central police department of the city. There the individuals seized the documents and items covered by the attorney-client privilege. A protocol indicating a commission of the administrative offense was filed against Liudmila under Art. 23.4 of the Administrative Code (disobedience to a lawful order of the authorities’ representatives). Prior to the trial, she was kept at the Okrestina Preliminary Detention Center, despite having three children. She was deprived of access to her lawyers for 20 hours after the arrest. The court imposed on her 30 basic units fine under Art. 23.4 of the Administrative Code. Human rights defenders consider the persecution to be politically motivated, directed against the professional duties of an attorney to protect political opponents of the current government.
On February 19, 2021, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy of the Ministry of Justice decided to deprive Liudmila of the lawyer’s license. The license’s expiration date has not been determined yet. According to the Ministry of Justice press release, this decision was made based on the fact of committing an administrative offense under Art. 23.4 of the Administrative Code.
The Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe President communicated to the Belarusian authorities a letter in support of Liudmila and stressed the inadmissibility of obstructing the activities of lawyers.
155 lawyers signed a petition to the Ministry of Justice about the unjustified deprivation of Liudmila’s and other lawyers’ licenses.


Konstantin Mikhel
Konstantin Mikhel is a lawyer and the managing partner at the Vlasova, Mikhel & Partners law firm. He is also a member of the Minsk Regional Bar. He has been practicing law since 1995. He is one of the most prominent business lawyers in Belarus. He is a member of a number of advisory councils on business development at various governmental agencies. In 2009 he received commendations from the Belarusian Minister of Justice for his active work to protect the rights and legal interests of citizens and organizations. He was awarded the Belarusian Republican Lawyer’s Union’s Highest Legal Award in the Law and Economics category in 2010.
In the autumn of 2020, he was subjected to administrative liability for violating the procedure of organizing mass events (Art. 23.34, para. 1 of the Administrative Code). According to unofficial information, he was detained together with his son at his house.
On February 19, 2021, the Ministry of Justice Qualification Commission on Advocacy decided to deprive Konstantin of a lawyer’s license. The license’s expiration date has not yet been determined. The Ministry of Justice press release states the following grounds for such a decision: “Attorneys Konstantin Mikhel and Maxim Konon participated in mass events held without the appropriate permission of the local executive committee, thereby committing an administrative offense under Art. 23.34, para. 1 of the Administrative Code.” According to the Ministry of Justice, “the above-mentioned actions of the lawyers discredit the title of a lawyer and the Bar, which is a misdemeanor incompatible with the title of a lawyer, entailing the termination of the lawyer’s license”.
Maxim Konon
In October 2020, the court of the Oktyabrsky district of Minsk found the lawyer guilty of committing an administrative offense under Art. 23.34, para.1 of the Code of Administrative Offenses (violation of the procedure of organizing mass events) and sentenced him to 12 days of arrest for allegedly participating in an unsanctioned protest action near the urban beach in Braslav.
In November 2020, the lawyer was detained by police officers at the entrance to the KGB office, where he had arrived to intervene in the criminal proceedings as a defender of journalist Katsiaryna Barysevich. He was sent to the pre-trial detention center in Baranovichi to serve an administrative arrest.
On February 19, 2021, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy of the Ministry of Justice decided to deprive Maksim Konon of his lawyer’s license. As indicated in the Commission’s conclusion, having committed an administrative offense, Maxim Konon violated Art. 18, para. 1 of the Law “On Advocacy and Advocate Activity in the Republic of Belarus”, paras 3, 7, 8, 9 of the Rules of Professional Activities, thereby discrediting the title of a lawyer and the Bar, which, under para. 73 of the Rules for the Professional Ethics for Attorneys, is a misdemeanor incompatible with the title of a lawyer.
Maxim Konon

In October 2020, the court of the Oktyabrsky district of Minsk found the lawyer guilty of committing an administrative offense under Art. 23.34, para.1 of the Code of Administrative Offenses (violation of the procedure of organizing mass events) and sentenced him to 12 days of arrest for allegedly participating in an unsanctioned protest action near the urban beach in Braslav.
In November 2020, the lawyer was detained by police officers at the entrance to the KGB office, where he had arrived to intervene in the criminal proceedings as a defender of journalist Katsiaryna Barysevich. He was sent to the pre-trial detention center in Baranovichi to serve an administrative arrest.
On February 19, 2021, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy of the Ministry of Justice decided to deprive Maksim Konon of his lawyer’s license. As indicated in the Commission’s conclusion, having committed an administrative offense, Maxim Konon violated Art. 18, para. 1 of the Law “On Advocacy and Advocate Activity in the Republic of Belarus”, paras 3, 7, 8, 9 of the Rules of Professional Activities, thereby discrediting the title of a lawyer and the Bar, which, under para. 73 of the Rules for the Professional Ethics for Attorneys, is a misdemeanor incompatible with the title of a lawyer.

Mikhail Kirilyuk
MRBA lawyer. Member of the expanded board of the Coordination Council. Mikhail is responsible for issues of justice in the National Anti-Crisis Management.

He posted on his Facebook page about the country’s topical events (in particular, this post dated September 1, 2020, caught the authorities’ attention), and also spoke about the situation in an interview (similarly, this material dated September 6, 2020, has also attracted the attention of the state agencies).

For these statements, the MRBA disciplinary commission reprimanded the lawyer.

On February 8, 2021, the Ministry of Justice sent Mikhail a notice of consideration of the issue of revoking his license in connection with the abovementioned statements (1, 2) signed by the Head of the Advocacy and Licensing Department D. Podlesskaya.

On February 12, 2021, Mikhail sent a request for clarification of the statements that served as the basis for revoking the license, to which no response was received.

On February 19, 2021, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy of the Ministry of Justice decided to deprive Mikhail Kirilyuk of his lawyer’s license. The press service of the Ministry of Justice indicated the following rationale for the decision: “Attorney Maxim Kirilyuk has made public statements on the global computer network Internet, containing rude, tactless expressions in relation to representatives of state bodies, which is unacceptable."

Yulia Levanchuk
Lawyer of the Brest Regional Bar Association.
On October 15, 2020, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy of the Ministry of Justice decided to deprive Yulia of her lawyer’s license. The press service of the Ministry of Justice indicated the following rationale for the decision: “Brest Regional Bar attorney, Yulia Levanchuk, initiated correspondence with an investigator, in which she threatened him and his family members.”
There is no further information available to the public.
Sergey Pichukha
On March 24, 2021, the Qualification Commission reviewed the materials concerning the case of Sergey Pichukha, MRBA attorney.

The case against the attorney was initiated “in connection with the revealed violation of the legislation on licensing, license requirements and conditions, consisting in an offense incompatible with the lawyer’s title (committing actions that discredit the title of a lawyer and the Bar)”.

Such actions, in the opinion of the Ministry of Justice, constitute “the fact that Sergey Pichukha committed an administrative offense, meaning the violation of the legal procedure for organizing a mass event”. The decision on the administrative case dated December 16, 2020, entered into force on February 8, 2021, after the re-examination of the case by the Minsk Regional Court.

After considering the materials, the Qualification Commission concluded that the above-mentioned actions discredit the title of a lawyer and the Bar, which composes a misdemeanor incompatible with the title of a lawyer, and entails the termination of the license. On March 30, 2021, the Ministry of Justice terminated the license of the attorney.
Lawyers deprived of the right to the profession based on the results of certification / recertification by the Qualification commission under the Ministry of Justice
Sergey Zikratsky
Lawyer of the Minsk City Bar Association. Sergey was an attorney in politically motivated cases, Sergei defended journalists and human rights activists.
On March 24, 2021, the attorney did not pass the recertification initiated because of a number of posts made by the attorney on his social media. The Ministry of Justice decided that his comments did not fully comply with the law, and therefore indicated the improper performance of the lawyer's professional duties.
Sergey Zikratsky was expelled from the Bar by a resolution dating March 31, 2021, due to "the inability of fulfilling his professional duties due to poor expertise, confirmed by the decision of the Qualification Commission on the Issues of Advocacy in the Republic of Belarus."
Olga Baranchik
Olga Baranchik is a former chairman of the MRBA disciplinary commission; she has worked in the legal profession for over 25 years.
She did not pass the recertification on March 24, 2021, due to "the inability to fulfill her professional duties due to poor expertise."
Boris Leskovsky
Boris Leskovsky has worked in the legal profession for over 25 years; 17 years as an attorney. He was detained and sentenced to administrative arrest after the protest rally. Boris was a defender in the BelTA case.
He did not pass the recertification on March 24, 2021, due to "the inability to fulfill his professional duties because of poor expertise."
Vladislav Filipovich
Vladislav Filipovich was a defense lawyer in the case involving a clash with the riot police on June 19 in Molodechno. He defended Uladzislau Yeustsihneyeu convicted under Art. 363, para. 2 of the Criminal Code (violent resistance to an internal affairs officer in the performance of his duties to protect public order) and recognized as a political prisoner. He expressed his civic position in his social networks.

He did not pass the recertification on March 24, 2021, due to "the inability to fulfill his professional duties due to poor expertise."

Andrey Bartashevich
The attorney possesses 23 years of legal experience; he graduated from the Belarusian Academy of Public Administration and interned at the Securities Department of the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Belarus. From 2002 to 2017 Andrey was a member of the Central Council of the Belarusian Republican Union of Lawyers and was a deputy of the Vileika District Council of Deputies of the 28th convocation.
On March 24, 2021, he was deprived of his license, due to the failure at the recertification based on “poor expertise confirmed by the decision of the Qualification Commission following the results of the recertification held on March 3, 2021."

Elena Shinkarevich
On March 24, 2021, she was deprived of her license, and did not pass the recertification due to "poor expertise confirmed by the decision of the Qualification Commission following the results of the recertification held on March 3, 2021".
Elena was asked if she had deliberately signed the petition against violence (a link to the petition was displayed on her social media). At the certification, she was demanded to quote verbatim the wording of the norms and asked questions related primarily to criminal law, which the lawyer almost does not deal with.
She was an attorney in the administrative proceedings, where the judge considered that the existence of an arrangement of the alleged offender with an attorney proves the former’s “intention to participate in illegal events.”

Nikolay Yotka
On March 3, 2021, he was called in for recertification by the Qualification Commission on Advocacy Issues under the Ministry of Justice.
On March 24, 2021, the lawyer was deprived of his license, due to failing the recertification because of “poor expertise confirmed by the decision of the Qualification Commission following the results of the recertification held on March 3, 2021."

Anna Vovchinskaya
Anna was called in for extraordinary recertification on April 21, 2021.
Based on the results of the recertification, the Qualification Commission decided on the impossibility for the lawyer to fulfill her professional duties within the MRBA due to poor expertise.
Anna possesses 27 years of experience in the legal profession.
Svetlana Khololovich
Svetlana was called in for extraordinary certification on April 21, 2021.
Based on the results of the recertification, the Qualification Commission decided on the impossibility for the lawyer to fulfill her professional duties within the Brest Regional Bar due to poor expertise.
Svetlana Khololovich has worked in the legal profession for 19 years, in 2020 she took part in a campaign providing remote consultations for medical staff who directly worked with COVID-19 patients free of charge.
Irina Bertsuk
Irina is an MRBA ex-lawyer (she practiced within Minsk Regional Bar from 1998 to 2021).
The lawyer was disbarred on June 25, 2021. Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice concluded on May 20, 2021, about the impossibility of the lawyer to fulfill her professional duties due to poor expertise.
It is known that the lawyer expressed her civic position on her Facebook page and actively participated as a defender in administrative and criminal proceedings related to political events in Belarus (for instance, in the cases of political prisoners Natallia Hersche, Mikita Kochur.
Anton Gashinsky
Anton was a lawyer practicing within the Minsk City Bar. On July 14, 2021, the Qualification Commission of the Ministry of Justice considered materials on the termination of his lawyer’s license. The reason allegedly lay in systematic violations of the Law “On Advocacy and Advocate Activity” and the Rules of Professional Ethics of an Attorney.

Maslov, Gashinsky & Partners law firm actively provided legal assistance to clients in many high-profile politically motivated cases.

Anton Gashinsky defended political scientist Vitaly Shkliarov, journalist Andrei Alexandrov, IT specialists of the PandaDoc company, Uladzimir Niaronski (the author of the YouTube channel "Slutsk for Living"), Egor Dudnikov, Olga Filatchenkova (a BSUIR lecturer) accused in the "Student case". Recently, Anton Gashinsky also represented the interests of Sofia Sapieha, who was detained along with Roman Protasevich.

Olga Karpushonok
An extraordinary certification took place on August 11, 2021. Based on the results of the certification, it was concluded that the lawyers of the Maslov, Gashinsky & Partners law firm, involving Olga Karpushonok, were unable to fulfill their professional duties "due to poor expertise."
"The grounds for the extraordinary certification was the improper performance of the professional duties of the firm’s attorneys, which was revealed in the course of a random inspection of the firm’s activities carried out by the Ministry of Justice in the first half of 2021," the Ministry of Justice reported.

Evgeny Maslov
The extraordinary certification took place on August 11, 2021. Based on the certification results, it was concluded that the lawyers of the Maslov, Gashinsky & Partners law firm, including Evgeny Maslov, were unable to fulfill their professional duties "due to poor expertise."
"The grounds for the extraordinary certification was the improper performance of the professional duties of the firm’s attorneys, which was revealed in the course of a random inspection of the firm’s activities carried out by the Ministry of Justice in the first half of 2021," the Ministry of Justice reported.
The lawyer defended the persons accused in the "White Legion" case, other high-profile cases, and administrative proceedings.
Yulia Kniaz
Yulia had an individual law practice.
In January 2021, she was called in for another certification at the Ministry of Justice, during which the discussion took place addressing her participation in lawyers’ video message against violence, as well as her posts on the Internet related to the illegal expulsion of students. The Qualification Commission decided on “partial compliance” with the qualification requirements, so the re-certification was appointed in 6 months.
On August 11, 2021, an extraordinary certification took place because of the posts on social media and the lawyer’s refusal to undergo knowledge testing of the whole Belarusian legislation. The Qualification Commission decided on "the impossibility of fulfilling a lawyer's professional duties due to poor expertise."

Irina Voronkova
On October 28, 2021, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy conducted a regular certification of attorneys of the Grodno Regional Bar and Minsk City Bar.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided on the impossibility of Irina Voronkova to fulfill her professional duties due to "poor expertise".
Irina Voronkova defended Eduard Babaryka, who has been held in the KGB pre-trial detention center since May 18, 2020 (for almost 3 years).
Igor Petrashevich
On October 28, 2021, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy conducted a regular certification of attorneys of the Grodno Regional Bar and Minsk City Bar.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided on the impossibility of Igor Petrashevich to fulfill his professional duties due to "poor expertise".
Igor Petrashevich was the managing partner of the Petrashevich & Partners law firm.
Natalia Alekseeva
On November 25, 2021, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy conducted another certification of lawyers of the territorial Bars and considered the termination of licenses.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided to terminate the license of Natalia Alekseeva due to "poor expertise".
Alexander Belov
On November 25, 2021, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy conducted another certification of lawyers of the territorial Bars and considered the termination of licenses.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided to terminate the license of Alexander Belov due to "poor expertise".
Natalia Vantsovich
Natalya Vantsovich defended Olga Zolotar, the political prisoner, and mother of many children, who was sentenced to 5 years in prison.
Natalya Vantsovich was subjected to disciplinary action initiated due to the Minister of Justice’s order of October 13, 2021; the lawyer was reprimanded. The reason for such measures was that the lawyer allegedly allowed the disclosure of the preliminary investigation data, namely the information about the appointment of an examination connected with Olga Zolotar’s proceeding. The information about the examination had been already
On November 25, 2021, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy conducted another certification of lawyers of the territorial Bars and considered the termination of licenses.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided to terminate the license of Natalia Vantsovich due to "poor expertise".

Alexander Filanovich
On January 26, 2022, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy conducted a regular certification of attorneys of the Grodno Regional Bar and Minsk City Bar.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided to terminate the license of Alexander Filanovich due to "poor expertise". He defended Sofia Sapieha, a political prisoner.
Sergey Garusov
On January 26, 2022, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy conducted the certification of attorneys of the territorial Bar associations and considered the termination of licenses.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided on Sergey Garusov’s impossibility to fulfill his professional duties due to "poor expertise".

Yuri Galay
On February 24, 2022, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy conducted a regular certification of attorneys of the Grodno Regional Bar and Minsk City Bar.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided on Yuri Galay’s impossibility to fulfill his professional duties due to "poor expertise".

Natalia Alexeyuk
On March 24, 2022, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy conducted a regular certification of attorneys of the Grodno Regional Bar and Minsk City Bar.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided on Natalia’s impossibility to fulfill her professional duties due to "poor expertise".
Maria Kolesova-Hudzilina
On April 21, 2022, it became known that attorney Maria Kolesova-Hudzilina failed the certification at the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice. On May 10, 2022, the lawyer reported that her license had been terminated.
She defended Eduard Palchys, Yauhen Yushkevich and other political prisoners.
Natalia Metelitsa
On April 21, 2022, it became known that lawyer Natalia Metelitsa failed the certification at the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice. The commission decided that it was impossible for the lawyer to fulfill her professional duties due to poor expertise.
Valery Savostyanchik
On April 21, 2022, based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided on Valery Savostyanchik’s impossibility to fulfill his professional duties due to poor expertise.
Valery was a defense lawyer in criminal proceedings initiated after the 2020 elections.
Vladimir Shlyakhto
On April 21, 2022, following the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided on Vladimir Shlyakhto’s impossibility to fulfill his professional duties due to poor expertise.
Igor Kostyuk
On April 21, 2022, Igor Kostyuk failed the certification at the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice "due to poor expertise."
Igor Kostyuk defended political prisoners; among others, he was a defense attorney for Pavel Piaskou, the first convict for the events of August 2020.
Alexander Baranovsky
On June 8, 2022, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy conducted an ordinary certification of lawyers of the Minsk City Bar, Minsk Regional Bar, Gomel Regional Bar Associations.
Alexander Baranovsky’s license was terminated due to the lawyer’s “poor expertise”.
Vitaly Lebedev
On June 8, 2022, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy conducted an ordinary certification of lawyers of the Minsk City Bar, Minsk Regional Bar, Gomel Regional Bar Associations.
Vitaly Lebedev’s license was terminated due to the lawyer’s “poor expertise”.
Larisa Stelmashuk
On June 8, 2022, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy conducted an ordinary certification of lawyers of the Minsk City Bar, Minsk Regional Bar, Gomel Regional Bar Associations.
Larisa Stelmashuk’s license was terminated due to the lawyer’s “poor expertise”.
Alexey Dravitsa
On June 8, 2022, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy conducted an ordinary certification of lawyers of the Minsk City Bar, Minsk Regional Bar, Gomel Regional Bar Associations.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided on Alexey Dravitsa’s impossibility to fulfill his professional duties due to poor expertise.
Pavel Pravdikov
On June 8, 2022, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy conducted an ordinary certification of lawyers of the Minsk City Bar, Minsk Regional Bar, Gomel Regional Bar Associations.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided on Pavel Pravdikov’s impossibility to fulfill his professional duties due to poor expertise.
Gennady Vlasenko
On September 6, 2022, the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice conducted an extraordinary certification of lawyers, including four attorneys of the Gomel Regional Bar Association. The Commission decided on Gennady Vlasenko’s impossibility to fulfill his professional duties “due to poor expertise.”
Tatiana Savchenko
On September 6, 2022, the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice conducted an extraordinary certification of lawyers, including four attorneys of the Gomel Regional Bar Association. The Commission decided on Tatiana’s impossibility to fulfill her professional duties “due to poor expertise.”
Victoria Nechay
On September 6, 2022, the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice conducted an extraordinary certification of lawyers, including four attorneys of the Gomel Regional Bar Association. The Commission decided on Victoria’s impossibility to fulfill her professional duties “due to poor expertise.”
Pavel Kulazhenko
On September 6, 2022, the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice conducted an extraordinary certification of lawyers, including four attorneys of the Gomel Regional Bar Association. The Commission decided on Pavel’s impossibility to fulfill his professional duties “due to poor expertise.”
Anna Pavlyuk
On September 6, 2022, the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice conducted an extraordinary certification of lawyers, including four attorneys of the Gomel Regional Bar Association. The Commission decided on Anna’s impossibility to fulfill her professional duties “due to poor expertise.”
Expulsion from the Bar by decision of the Disciplinary Commission of the Territorial Bar Association (or Council of the Territorial Bar Association)
Vladimir Sozonchuk
On February 17, 2021, by order of the Minister of Justice disciplinary action was initiated against Vladimir Sozonchuk. On February 24, 2021, by the decision of the disciplinary commission of the Minsk City Bar Association the attorney was subjected to disciplinary sanction in the form of exclusion from the Minsk City Bar Association for “committing an offense incompatible with the title of a lawyer.” The next day, the Minsk City Bar Association Council expelled Vladimir Sozonchuk from the Bar with the decision entering into force on 26.02.2021.
The reason for initiating disciplinary proceedings was a letter from Ivan Noskevich, Chairman of the Investigative Committee of the Republic of Belarus to the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Belarus, by which the Minister of Justice issued an order to initiate disciplinary proceedings on February 17, 2021.
The essence of the proceedings was the following: after being called in on February 11, 2021, by representatives of the investigative body (the central apparatus of the Investigative Committee) to conduct another investigative action with his client, Dmitry Kozlov, the attorney refused to sign a non-disclosure statement of the preliminary investigation, and, thereby, allegedly violated the Law on Advocacy (requirements in paras 2 and 3 of part 4 of Article 48 and Article 198 of the Criminal Procedure Code, as well as paras 4 and 5 of Part 2 of Article 43 and Article 46 of the Criminal Procedure Code).
On March 24, 2021, the Qualification Commission considered the issue of termination of Vladimir’s license in connection with the disciplinary sanction consisting of his expulsion from the Minsk City Bar for committing an offense incompatible with the title of a lawyer. So, the attorney lost his right to the profession.
Vladimir defended Mikalai Statkevich and video blogger Dmitry Kozlov (owner of the "Seryi Kot" ("Grey Cat") YouTube channel), who were recognized as political prisoners.

Dmitry Laevsky
Dmitry was a lawyer and managing partner of the “Laevsky, Yulsky, and Partners" law firm (from July 2020 — Laevsky and Partners law firm). He was a member of the Minsk City Bar Association.

Since June 18, 2020, he had been defending presidential candidate Viktor Babaryka. Since September 9, 2020, he had been defending the lawyer Maxim Znak, who was the representative of the presidential candidate Viktor Babaryka and the head of the legal department of his election campaign headquarters.

As part of their defense campaign, Dmitry Laevsky publicly disputed the charges against them, declared their innocence and the unlawfulness of their persecution, and was repeatedly featured in the media in connection with the violation of their rights during the preliminary investigation. Dmitry spoke out in court proceedings, and also when appealing final sentences.

In the light of multiple violations of professional rights and repression against lawyers that began in 2020, Dmitry Laevsky took part in a number of publications, interviews and events on issues of the independence of the legal profession, ways to ensure proper conditions for advocacy and the rule of law. Together with his colleagues, he represented the interests of lawyer Aleksandr Pylchenko while appealing against the decision of the Ministry of Justice to terminate Aleksandr Pylchenko’s lawyer’s license. Since August 2020, he has been running a public Telegram channel about advocacy, judiciary and the right to defense.

On April 8, 2021, by the decision of the disciplinary commission of the Minsk City Bar Association, he was brought to disciplinary responsibility in the form of a reprimand. The reason was Dmitry Laevsky’s post on social networks, in which he criticized the draft amendments to the Law on Advocacy in terms of restricting the rights of lawyers who worked in law firms. The disciplinary commission of the Minsk City Bar Association indicated as a disciplinary offense that “Dmitry Laevsky on March 11, 2021, posted on his Facebook page information containing incorrect and defamatory statements addressed to lawyers and heads of legal advice offices”, by which allegedly violated the Rules of Professional Ethics.

On July 8, 2021, by the decision of the disciplinary commission of the Minsk City Bar Association, he was brought to disciplinary responsibility in the form of an exclusion from the Bar. The reason for the disciplinary proceedings was Laevsky's speech in the court pleadings in defense of Viktor Babaryka. In his speech, Dmitry expressed his legal position on innocence and asked to acquit not only Viktar Babaryka, but also other defendants, despite the fact that they pleaded guilty, and their defenders did not ask for acquittal. The disciplinary commission of the Minsk City Bar Association indicated that Dmitry “publicly assessed the speeches and legal positions of the defenders of other convicts in the criminal proceedings”, which allegedly violated the Rules of Professional Ethics.

On July 9, 2021, by the decision of the Minsk City Bar Association Council, he was expelled from the Bar.

On August 17, 2021, by a decree of the Ministry of Justice, his lawyer’s license was terminated.

On August 2, 2021, international professional organizations of lawyers, including the Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe and Lawyers for Lawyers, spoke out in support of Dmitry Laevsky.

On December 10, 2021, Dmitry Laevsky received the CCBE Human Rights Award 2021.

Ekaterina Zheltonoga
On July 14, 2021, the Qualification Commission considered materials on the termination of Ekaterina’s license due to the expulsion of the lawyer from the Minsk City Bar Association for “systematic (two or more times within 12 months in a row) violation of legal requirements and conditions for carrying out legal activities.”
Valery Zvyagintsev
On July 14, 2021, the Qualification Commission considered materials on the termination of Valery’s
license due to the expulsion of the lawyer from the Minsk Regional Bar Association for committing an offense incompatible with the title of a lawyer; the list of such offenses is provided by the Rules of Professional Ethics (commission of actions that discredit the title of a lawyer and the legal profession).
Alexey Telegin
At the beginning of July 2021, the Ministry of Justice, by order of the First Deputy Minister, initiated disciplinary proceedings against Alexey for violating the rules of professional ethics of the lawyer by way of posting on social media. The order stated that the publications allegedly undermined the credibility of state authorities (in particular, the post of 30.08.2020 was titled “I have a dream” and referred to the future, describing the lawyer’s ideas about the state and legal framework of Belarus). Disciplinary materials were transferred to the MRBA disciplinary commission.
By the decision of the MRBA disciplinary commission, the lawyer was reprimanded.
However, the Ministry of Justice did not agree with this decision, it re-initiated disciplinary proceedings and sent materials to the Belarusian Republican Bar Association.
On September 8, 2021, Alexey was disbarred under the decision of the MRBA Council for committing an offense incompatible with the title of lawyer.
On September 30, 2021, the Ministry of Justice adopted a resolution on the termination of his lawyer’s license in connection with the exclusion from the territorial Bar.
Leonid Belsky
On September 22, 2021, the Ministry of Justice terminated Leonid’s license in connection with the disciplinary sanction in the form of expulsion from the Gomel Regional Bar Association for a systematic (two or more times within 12 months in a row) violation of legal requirements and conditions for carrying out legal activities.
Natalia Matskevich
Natalia represented the interests of Viktar Babaryka, Mikalai Dziadok, Svetlana Alexievich, defendants in the White Legion case, Sergei Tikhanovsky.
On October 12, 2021, disciplinary proceedings were initiated by order of the Minister of Justice. In accordance with the order dated October 12, 2021, Natalia Matskevich was suspended from performing professional activities from October 13, 2021, due to the initiation of disciplinary proceedings. On October 25, 2021, the Minsk City Bar Association disciplinary commission decided on a disciplinary sanction in the form of exclusion from the Bar. On November 25, 2021, the decision of the Qualification Commission on Advocacy under the Ministry of Justice was issued on the possibility of termination of her license.
On December 3, 2021, the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Belarus decided to terminate Natalia’s lawyer’s license.
Evgeny Pylchenko
On October 20, 2021, by order of the Ministry of Justice disciplinary proceedings against the lawyer defending Viktor Babaryka and Maxim Znak, Yevgeny Pylchenko, were initiated. By the same order, Evgeny was suspended from legal practice.
On the evening of October 28, a session of the disciplinary commission of the Minsk City Bar Association took place. The commission decided to disbar the lawyer for systematic violations of the Law on Advocacy.
Sergey Ivanov
On November 25, 2021, the Qualification Commission on Advocacy conducted the certification of attorneys of the territorial Bar associations and considered the termination of licenses.
Based on the certification results, the Qualification Commission decided on the termination of Sergey’s license for “committing offenses incompatible with the title of lawyer.”
The lawyer previously actively posted in his Facebook feed. The “offense” consists in posting statements containing information that undermines public confidence in public authorities, in the activities of judges, and in law enforcement agencies.
Dmitry Lozovik
Lawyer Dmitry Lozovik was called in for the Qualification Commission on August 11, 2021, to undergo the certification procedure, but did not show up. Disciplinary proceedings were initiated against the lawyer for the failure to be present at the attestation; Dmitry was reprimanded. On August 13, a search was carried out at the place of his registration within the criminal investigation in which Dmitry Lozovik was a defender.
On December 3, 2021, the Ministry of Justice decided to terminate his license from December 7, 2021. The reason was the application of the disciplinary sanction in the form of expulsion from the Minsk City Bar Association for systematic (2 or more times within 12 months) non-payment of fees.
Currently located outside Belarus. Dmitry Lozovik defended the political prisoner, philosopher Vladimir Matskevich.

Aleksey Kerol
Ex-lawyer at the Minsk legal advice office specializing in civil and economic law; was expelled from the Minsk City Bar Association on November 4, 2021, for committing disciplinary misconduct (consisting in the commitment of an administrative offense) incompatible with the title of a lawyer.
The basis for the decision of the disciplinary commission of the Minsk City Bar Association, adopted on November 3, 2021, was the lawyer’s administrative liability under Art. 24.23 of the Code of Administrative Offenses (in the previous version — Art. 23.34) to which he was subjected in November 2020.
Aleksey was also a defense lawyer in administrative proceedings initiated against protestors.

Elizaveta Matveeva
Elizaveta defended political prisoners (journalist Gennady Mozheiko, philosopher Vladimir Matskevich, T*T.BY employee Anna Lopatko, journalist Irina Slavnikova).
In November 2021, due to the initiative of Nikolai Starovoitov, Deputy Minister of Justice, Elizaveta Matveeva was subjected to an extraordinary certification. The lawyer did not agree with this initiative, because, according to the instruction on the procedure for conducting extraordinary certification valid at that time, the grounds for such certification were facts of poor qualification, which could be divided into facts of violation of professional duties or two or more complaints about violation of the law.
On December 13, the attorney found out that on December 7, 2021, by order of the Minister of Justice, disciplinary proceedings were initiated against her due to her failure to show up for the certification, as well as her suspension from professional activities, while on December 8, 9, and 10 the lawyer carried out her professional duties: she went to court, visited clients in jail.
By the decision of the Council of the Minsk City Bar Association of December 22, 2021, she was brought to disciplinary responsibility for the systematic violations of legal requirements and conditions for carrying out legal activities; she was expelled from the Minsk City Bar Association.

Natalia Nekrashevich
Natalia has been practicing law individually since 2013 within the Minsk City Bar Association; since September 1st, 2021 she has been practicing within the Legal Advice Office of the Frunzensky district of Minsk.
On August 12, 2021, Deputy Minister of Justice of the Republic of Belarus Nikolai Starovoitov issued a proposal to conduct an extraordinary attestation in relation to Natalia. The reason for the proposal was a letter received by the Ministry of Justice from the Presidential Administration in connection with one of the defendants in the politically motivated criminal case.
In October 2021, the lawyer filed a petition for a pardon for the defendant, who was sentenced to 2 years in prison under Art. 342 and Art. 364 of the Criminal Code, to the Pardon Commission of the Presidential Administration, and sent an inquiry as to the day of consideration of the application. These facts were considered an “improper performance of professional duties.”
On December 23, 2021, a session of the Qualification Commission on Advocacy took place, when an extraordinary attestation of Natalia was carried out. Based on its results, the decision was made on the impossibility to carry out her professional activities due to poor expertise.
On January 20, 2022, the Council of the Minsk City Bar Association issued a resolution on the expulsion of the lawyer from the Minsk City Bar Association from January 24, 2022 due to the impossibility of the lawyer to perform her professional duties because of poor expertise, confirmed by the decision of the Qualification Commission.

Alexey Nesterenko
During his arrest, lawyer Aleksey Nesterenko was severely beaten. This became known from the words of one of the cellmates of the lawyer and the detained A1 press secretary Nikolai Bredelev.
As far as I know, Nikolai Bredelev and his friend, Alexey, were brutally detained together. They were beaten, the devices were broken in the apartment. The lawyer was completely blue: his legs, lower back, and his eyes were bruised.”
After his arrest, Alexey was subjected to administrative detention for 30 days. The reasons for the detention and alleged offenses are unknown.
On February 24, 2022, the Qualification Commission considered the termination of his license in connection with the application of disciplinary sanctions against him in the form of exclusion from the territorial Bar for committing offenses incompatible with the title of lawyer.

Vladimir Borisov
On September 6, 2022, the Qualification Commission under the Ministry of Justice held an extraordinary attestation of lawyers, including four attorneys from the Gomel Regional Bar Association.
The Qualification Commission decided on terminating Vladimir’s license in connection with the disciplinary sanction appointed to him by the council of the Vitebsk Regional Bar Association in the form of expulsion from the Bar for systematic (two or more times within 12 consecutive months) violations of legal requirements and conditions for carrying out legal activities.
Andrey Atamanchuk
On May 19, 2022, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy in the Republic of Belarus conducted ordinary and extraordinary certification of lawyers.
The Qualification Commission terminated Andrey’s license in connection with the application of a disciplinary sanction to him in the form of an exclusion from the Minsk Regional Bar Association for committing misconduct incompatible with the title of a lawyer.
Larisa Atamanchuk
On August 4, 2022, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy revoked the license of Larisa Atamanchuk due to the fact that a disciplinary sanction was applied to her in the form of expulsion from the Minsk Regional Bar Association for committing misconduct incompatible with the title of a lawyer.
Larisa Atamanchuk defended Sergei Voznyak, a confidant of the 2010 presidential candidate Vladimir Neklyaev. After a protest in December 2010, he was charged with planning out group actions that violate public order, and sentenced to two years on probation.
In addition, at various times she represented the Belarusian Business Paper, journalist Tatyana Bublikova, photographer Vadim Zamirovsky and Yuri Aleinik, Nasha Niva author, who was expelled from the Academy of Public Administration for political reasons.
In 2017, Larisa was awarded the 2nd-degree badge of distinction of the Republican Bar Association “Ganarovy Advakat” for her impeccable work in the legal profession.
Ilona Zalutskaya
On August 4, 2022, the Qualification Commission for Advocacy in Belarus revoked the license of Ilona Zalutskaya due to the fact that a disciplinary sanction was applied to her in the form of exclusion from the Minsk Regional Bar Association for committing misconduct incompatible with the title of a lawyer.
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