Investigation Committee saw no corpus delicti in publication of information considered medical secret on the person who burnt himself on Baghramyan Avenue15:22, October 8, 2016 | News, Own news
Some days after Kajik Grigoryan burnt himself in Baghramyan Avenue on July 30, 2016 and died at hospital 3 days later, the press published some materials that he was HIV-positive and a drug user. The information appeared in the media by the words of Norayr Davidyan, Director of the Republican Scientific Center for Radiation Medicine and Burns who provided it in response to the questions of journalists on the state of health of the person who tried to burn himself.
In particular, such publications appeared on the news websites of armlur.am (‘The man who burnt himself on Baghramyan Avenue was HIV-positive; doctor clarifies what threat might face the people who provided him with medical care’) and tert.am (‘Doctor: “The man who burnt himself stated that he took this steps not for political reasons; he was a drug user and suffered AIDS’).
In the publications above, N. Davidyan talked about K. Grigoryan’s health problems and used qualifications (‘avid drug addict’, ‘AIDS patient’) causing stigma, which clearly aimed to shape a negative attitude towards what happened and that person. Moreover, he tried to qualify whatever happened as a non-political step and undermine and discredit the person’s protest manifested by burning himself.
Thus, N. Davidyan violated the person’s right to privacy and family life and the right to honor and good reputation as enshrined in the RA Constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights, as well as the provision on medical secret of the RA Law on Medical Care and Services to the Population and on Protection of Personal Data, which is a criminal offense under Article 145 (Disclosing medical secret) of the RA Criminal Code.
Based on the above and the application of Kajik Grigoryan’s sister to the Organization to protect her brother’s rights, on September 13, 2016, HCA Vanadzor submitted a crime report.
By its decision of September 29, 2016, the RA Investigative Committee refused to initiate criminal proceedings on the pretext that the doctor disclosed that K. Grigoryan was HIV-positive to prevent the risk that the people, who communicated with him on the day of his attempt to burn himself, might have contracted the virus, and therefore there was no corpus delicti in his action. The decision invoked Article 8 of the RA Law on Medical Care and Services to the Population; according to its Para 3(1), the provision of information may not be refused if it relates to emergency situations threatening public security and health (…) and their consequences.
It should be added that the Investigative Committee provided no comments on the expressions by the same doctor about K. Grigoryan that he was “avid drug addict”, “detained for 10 years” and other similar qualifications that obviously did not aim to protect any person from any risk.
HCA Vanadzor will appeal under the prescribed procedure the RA Investigative Committee’s decision on rejecting to initiate criminal proceedings dated September 29, 2016.