Andrei Bondarenko: I hope that the prison has made me stronger

Minsk City Court acquitted the businessman, a member of the United Civil Party Andrei Bondarenko.

On charges of economic crimes, he served two years in prison. Now the court has recognized the lack of evidence, and Andrei Bondarenko was released from custody.

Andrei Bondarenko in the evening gave an interview to the liberation of Freedom.

Bushlyakov: What do you have time to do after his release?

Bondarenko: Meet with family and loved ones, and now meeting with friends.

Bushlyakov: How you met the daughter? If you put in jail, she was 7 months.

Bondarenko: For myself it was a surprise: it seemed to me that she would not recognize me, but she happily went on his hands, and we almost did not leave until then, until we arrived home.

Bushlyakov: Your case the courts have considered several times. What, in your opinion, led to an acquittal — once you almost two years, since May of 2009, spent behind bars?

I think that's the Minsk City Court found the illegality and invalidity of the charges and the sentence handed down, which is based on the law.

Bushlyakov: You want to say that the city court before your case more carefully approached more closely. and accordingly a fact appreciated it?

Bondarenko: So. That professionalism with which approached this case in the end resulted in apravdavchy sentence.

Bushlyakov: Your co-workers, and not only will they call your case as politically motivated, noting that it occurred after you took part in the parliamentary elections. What is your assessment of the case motive: political or personal parahunki yet?

Bondarenko: The verdict will come into force 10 days, and I would not want to make final conclusions before the entry of the verdict. A lot more of what I would like to know in my criminal case. Of course, politics is one of the most important and decisive moments.

Bushlyakov: Minsk City Court found the lack of evidence in your actions after you've spent two years behind bars — whether you intend to claim compensation?

Bondarenko: To this question I will answer again after going to have on hand a final and legally confirmed the decision of my innocence.

Bushlyakov: Andrei Bondarenko today and two years ago — how big is the difference?

Bondarenko: I was like a man who loves his family, his country, his friends, as well in this regard, and stayed. But there was, of course, soul-searching, I now look at many things differently. Began to love much of what had not paid attention in a different way was treated to what is happening around us. Changes occur after prison in any person: someone is getting stronger, some weaker. As Sakharov said: "Strong prison makes stronger and the weak weaker." I hope that the prison has made me stronger.

Bushlyakov: How much do you feel the solidarity, staying behind bars? Or that came to you?

Certainly, support, and my friends and the media, including Radio Free Europe, played a very important role for me during his stay in prison. It is very supportive of me, and if it were not for this support can not imagine how I would have coped.

As far as possible in the Belarusian prison to monitor developments in the country?

Bondarenko: It's hard enough to get the information, because censorship is doing its job: many materials are not reached, many letters. In the camp of the information came more than a prison. Did not reach the letter we wrote a complaint to the prosecutor's office, but all were the standard responses: blame Belpochta, as we do with it. You can watch, but under the care of censorship.

Bushlyakov: What would like and can do in the near future? Do you see yourself in social activities?

Bondarenko: In the near future I will fully dedicate himself to his family, and in the future, I think I'll stay true to yourself, and I will continue to engage in the activities that engaged.

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