The trial of a young man accused of attempted murder of two police officers started at the Tallinn-based Harju County Court on Monday with 25-year-old Daniil Sauskin pleading guilty to a drug-related crime, but not guilty to attempted murder.
The court began hearing witnesses but, by order, prohibited the disclosure of their testimony at this stage. The trial will continue in October and November.
According to the statement of charges, Sauskin had been selling drugs at a parking lot in Tallinn's Lasnamae district on February 19. Police officers who learned of the sale tried to detain him, but he tried to escape from the scene by car.
The prosecutor's office said that it has been proven that the accused had seen the police officers standing in front of his car and instead of stopping and complying with the police officers' orders, the man ran them over.
North District Prosecutor Natalia Miilvee has previously said: "The accused must have understood that his actions may entail very severe consequences. For that reason, the prosecutor's office finds that deliberately running over a person and subsequently driving over them constitute attempted manslaughter. As an aggravating circumstance, the young man sought to flee the scene to conceal his offence and to prevent being arrested with a large amount of narcotic substance in his possession, which is why he is accused of attempted murder."
Information gathered during the investigation shows the accused had also been previously involved in handling narcotic substances and was at the parking lot on Karberi Street with the purpose of handing over cocaine to a buyer.
A large amount of drugs was found in the man's car during his arrest, and traces of narcotic substances were likewise found in an apartment he used. In addition to attempted murder, the man is also accused of unlawful handling of large quantities of narcotic drugs.
Editor: Helen Wright