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Prosecutor calls for 13 years in jail for Kaliningrad doctors in newborn murder case

A Russian prosecutor has requested the Moscow District Court to sentence Kaliningrad doctors Elena Belaya and Elina Sushkevich to 13 years in prison for the death of a newborn baby, state-agency TASS reported on 30 August.

The prosecutor also asked for Belya and Sushkevich to be deprived of the right to hold medical positions for three years. The final hearing in the case has been postponed to September.

On 24 August, a jury found Belaya and Sushkevich guilty of murdering an infant in a Kaliningrad maternity hospital.

A jury had acquitted both women two years prior, when the doctors were tried in the same case in 2020. In May 2021, an appeals court overturned the acquittal and sent the case back for retrial.

The medics were remanded to pre-trial detention in October last year.

The case against the acting chief doctor of Kalinigrad’s Maternity Hospital No. 4, Elena Belaya, and neonatologist Elina Sushkevich, began in 2018. Investigators believe that Sushkevich, acting on the instructions of then-chief doctor Sushkevich, administered a lethal dose of magnesium sulphate to a premature baby, after which it died.

Sushkevich was charged with the murder of an infant, while Belaya was charged with organising the murder and the abuse of authority.

Medical professionals across the country have rallied in support of Sushkevich. The Russian Society of Neonatologists stated that the accusations against the doctor were “absurd” and “not backed by serious scientific evidence.”

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