Polish minority leader fined

Mechyslau Jaskevich, one of the leaders of the Hrodna branch of the Union of Poles in Belarus, yesterday appeared in court on criminal charges of hooliganism.

He was detained last November at a bus stop.

A local district court has sentenced the Polish minority activist to Br1,240,000 in fines and additional Br500,000 to be paid in damages to the plaintiff. Jaskevich described the case as a far-fetched political act.

His lawyer said that Jaskevich is set to appeal the ruling in a higher court.