"Not a Cousin, but Bishimbayev's Distant Relative": - Bakhytzhan Baizhanov's Lawyer


Aside from Kuandyk Bishimbayev, Bakhytzhan Baizhanov is the other defendant in the high-profile homicide case case of Saltanat Nukenova is. He is being charged with concealment and failure to report a crime. Attention from all sides seems to be honed in on Kuandyk Bishimbayev. Baizhanov, however, has kept relatively. An Orda correspondent has learned more details about him.

Bakhytzhan Baizhanov has two lawyers and an interpreter. His wife is also involved in the process. She has not made any statements so far nor has she commented on the accusations against her husband.

Photo: Orda.kz

On April 3, during court proceedings, Bakhytzhan Baizhanov's lawyer requested to separate him from Kuandyk Bishimbayev. According to Baizhanov, he was pressuring him. The judge asked to explain. 

He exerts pressure on me in every possible way: "Say it like that, Say it like this." Regarding giving testimony,
 he explained.  

Responding, Bishimbayev claimed that he only wanted Baizhanov and his family to return the documents related to the case to him. 

In an interview, the defendant's lawyer Alibek Sekerov stated that Baizhanov and Bishimbayev are not first cousins. 

Their family connection is on the maternal side (Baizhan later said in court that it is on the fraternal side - Ed.), and they are distant relatives. As my colleague explained, the fifth or seventh generation. We will not continue to insist that my client be separated from Kuandyk Bishimbayev. To date, all measures have been taken. Now he does not approach our client and does not exert pressure on him.", 
said Sekerov's lawyer.  

The lawyer also believes that the charges against Baizhanov are unsubstantiated. 

Whether the testimony of Bishimbayev and Baizhanov will differ, I cannot tell you. We see from the case materials that article 434 (failure to report a crime) is used against the defendant — unsubstantiated, and article 432 (concealment of a crime), which is imputed to him, is also unsubstantiated. We are now proceeding with whether our client, being kept in the dark, was used by Bishimbayev. We know all this, but it needs to be established during the investigation and trial, Alibek Sekerov said. 

The lawyer added that Bakhytzhan Baizhanov had been working for Bishimbayev for quite some time.

There was no trusting relationship between them. The accusation is based on the fact that during the study of investigative and judicial materials, Bishimbayev was captured on video referring to Baizhanov as his brother. He (Baizhanov) was confined only because of this. If he were officially his brother, then they would not have been able to impute articles 432 and 434, as his actions would exempt him from criminal liability,
 the lawyer concluded.   

The Criminal Procedure Codex states the following:

Article 28. Exemption from the obligation to testify

  •       1. No one is obliged to testify against themselves, their spouse, or their close relatives, whose circle is defined by this Codex.
  •       2. The clergy are not obliged to testify against those who confided in them in confession.
  •       3. In the cases provided for in parts one and two of this article, these persons have the right to refuse to testify and cannot be subjected to any liability for this.

The Civil Procedure Codex has a similar specification.

Photo: Orda.kz

Bakhytzhan Baizhanov's behavior indicates that he may not be on Kuandyk Bishimbayev's side. He stated in court today, 11 April 2024, that he could not have known about Nukenova's death and sincerely apologized to her family. However, when Bishimbayev was accused of a corruption crime as a minister, Baizhanov, on the contrary, attempted to defend his relative. 

From October 2017 to April 2018, during the trial, he actively reposted posts made by local media, bloggers, profiles called "The Court of Bishimbayev", and Bishimbayev's ex-wife, Nazim Kaharman. All publications justified and whitewashed the defendant and the trial participants. 

Some of the headlines:

  • "Bishimbayev to the prosecution: You can't prove it — no need to tell SciFi stories."
  • "The Bishimbayev case: the defendant businessman urged prosecutors to admit guilt themselves."
  • "The prosecution against Bishimbayev has reached an impasse."
  • "Bishimbayev spoke about the pressure of investigators and face-to-face meetings without lawyers."

Baizhanov also shared posts by local bloggers who spoke positively of Bishimbayev. An example: 

Yes, Kuandyk Bishimbayev was an authority, and he is young, but he never humiliated himself, and, as we see, that's why he did not go through the compact kiln of the system! They hate talent because they see it not only as competition but also as a reproach for their mediocrity. They are insatiable, yet terribly cowardly. So cowardly that they silence lawyers! They are twisted, and woe to us if they lead the country!
 says the repost of Serzhan Akilbayev's post on Baizhanov's page.

After the conviction, Baizhanov wrote on his page only once. Incidentally, Kuandyk Bishimbayev's other "relative", Sultan Nurlybek, was convicted along with him. He was sentenced to seven years in prison. 

In May 2018, the court decided to leave Bishimbayev's sentence unchanged. He was sentenced to 10 years for accepting a two-million-dollar bribe as chairperson of the board of the Baiterek holding. Nurlybek's two-year sentence was commuted. Nurlybek was convicted of aiding and abetting bribery. Kuandyk Bishimbayev was released before him regardless.

Baizhanov nonetheless seems to be willing to speak openly in the current trial:

In December, I realized that my lawyer was communicating with Bishimbayev’s lawyers. Having learned this, I declined his services. Let them pass judgment on me, but I will speak only the truth, said Bakhytzhan Baizhanov.

Original Author: Yulia Akhmetova

DISCLAIMER: This is a translation. The text has been modified, the content is the same. The text has been updated to reflect the current situation as of 11/04/2024. Please refer to the original piece in Russian for accuracy.

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