Statement from Andrey Yakunin and his legal team
Haalogaland Court of Appeal in Norway today ruled that Andrey Yakunin was to be released as they did not consider flying a recreational drone in Norway a criminal offence. Yakunin and his legal team are very surprised that the court in a later ruling has decided to uphold his detention pending a Supreme Court review of the case.
- As we expected the Court of Appeal agreed that there was no lawful basis for the detention of Andrey Yakunin. The court agreed with the legal defence team that flying a recreational drone in Norway is not illegal. Mr Yakunin has not committed any criminal offence, says his legal team John Christian Elden, Bernt Heiberg and Jens Bernhard Herstad in a comment.
- I am very satisfied with the fact that the Court of Appeal decided that no law had been breached, and therefore his detention could not be prolonged. It is not a criminal offence for Russians to fly recreational drones in Norway according to the court’s decision. Therefore, Andrey Yakunin can not be suspected of any criminal offence and should be released immediately, says John Christian Elden from Elden Advokatfirma.
Yakunin’s legal defence team has challenged the stay of the Court of Appeal ruling so Yakunin can be released immediately.
“I am disappointed that the prosecution has appealed the decision of the Court of Appeal. I have done my best to assist the police in their inquiries. I have shown my full commitment, trust, and respect for the Norwegian criminal justice system. Should my case proceed to trial, I am confident that my innocence will be obvious to the court and that my legal team and I will demonstrate beyond doubt that I was simply enjoying my vacation in Norway and that flying a recreational drone is not an offence”, said Andrey Yakunin commenting on the decision of the Court of Appeal.