DUSHANBE, August 15, Asia-Plus — The trial of Uzbek national Sherali Ergashev began in Tajikistan’s Supreme Court on August 15. 

Proceeding started with the reading of the indictment, which charges resident of Uzbekistan’s Qashqadarya region Sherali Ergashev with killings, rapes, and robberies committed in the territory of Tajikistan and illegally crossing the border. 

Judge Yousuf Salimov, who is taking in the trial, said Ergashev illegally crossed the Uzbek border into Tajikistan in 2005.  According to him, Ergashev is charged with committing four murders in Tajikistan during the period from February 2005 to February 2007.  “Four minor girls Madina Aripova (February 2, 2005), Sabina Tourayeva (March 18, 2005), Manizha Ostonayeva (July 4, 2006), and Mavzouna Salimova (February 8, 2007) became victims of Ergashev,”   

Ergashev’s defense lawyer Fayzinisso Akramova told Asia-Plus that her client has previous convictions.  According to her, a regional court in Uzbekistan’s Qashqadarya region sentenced him to the supreme penalty for killing his step-sister in 2001. Later, his death-penalty was commuted to 21 years’ imprisonment.  “Ergashev has managed to escape from jail and he then illegally crossed the Uzbek border into Tajikistan,” said the lawyer, “He settled down in Dushanbe, working at one of local bakeries.”