Page last updated at 11:19 GMT, Friday, 26 June 2009 12:19 UK

Russia told to compensate inmate

Judges at European Court of Human Rights (file pic)
The Strasbourg judges deplored Russian prison conditions

The European Court of Human Rights has ordered Russia to pay 42,600 euros (£36,350) to a prisoner, saying he has suffered "appalling" conditions.

Alexander Bakhmutskiy, a 40-year-old Russian national, is serving a 13-year jail term for fraud, kidnapping and several other offences.

The Strasbourg court said he had shared a cramped cell in Rostov-on-Don with other inmates for nearly six years.

It also condemned the "excessive" length of his pre-trial detention.

The inmates had to share one toilet in their cell and Bakhmutskiy had less than 1 sq m (10.7 sq ft) of personal space, the court found, after examining his complaint.

The court said the Russian authorities had violated several articles of European law on the treatment of prisoners.

His conditions were so poor that they could arouse in him "feelings of fear, anguish and inferiority capable of humiliating and debasing him," the ruling said on Thursday.

Russia's Ria Novosti news agency says that Russia has lost most cases brought against it in the Strasbourg court, and that about 20% of the complaints handled by the court in the past decade have involved Russia.

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