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HomeNews ReportsKazakhstan: Former minister Kuandyk Bishimbayev kicked, punched wife Saltanat Nukenova to death, CCTV footage...

Kazakhstan: Former minister Kuandyk Bishimbayev kicked, punched wife Saltanat Nukenova to death, CCTV footage goes viral

In a recent hearing, the court was shown an 8-hour-long video showing 44-year-old Kuandyk Bishimbayev, a former economy minister, hitting his wife Saltanat Nukenova. The CCTV footage shows Bishimbayev repeatedly kicking and punching the 31-year-old in a family-owned restaurant.

The trial of a former economy minister in Kazakhstan accused of murdering his wife has sparked a debate in the country. A 31-year-old woman Saltanat Nukenova was found dead in November last year in a restaurant owned by a relative of her husband Kuandyk Bishimbayev, where the couple had spent nearly the whole day and the night before. For hours, Nukenova was there unconscious. 

In a recent hearing, the court was shown an 8-hour-long video showing 44-year-old Kuandyk Bishimbayev, a former economy minister, hitting his wife Saltanat Nukenova. The CCTV footage shows Bishimbayev repeatedly kicking and punching his 31-year-old wife in the family-owned restaurant.

The incident took place on 9 November last year in a VIP room of a restaurant in Almaty, Kazakhstan’s largest city.

He is then seen taking her by her hair into somewhere else with no cameras. When she attempted to flee by hiding in the toilet, Bishimbayev “broke down the door, pulled her out, and continued beating her. He grabbed her by the throat after hauling her from the toilet. This is when she lost consciousness,” the prosecutor stated during the trial.

As she lay on the floor, drenched in blood, Bishimbayev called a fortune teller on phone, who told him that his wife would be all right. The ambulance came 12 hours later, and medical personnel confirmed her dead on the spot. Saltanat Nukenova reportedly died of cerebral trauma. One of her nasal bones had broken and there were several bruises on her face, head, arms, and hands.

Bishimbayev has admitted to the crime, acknowledging that he caused his wife’s death. But he has denied that he acted “with exceptional cruelty”, the charge levelled against him. Initially he had maintained innocence but last month he admitted that he had beaten her and “unintentionally” caused her death. His lawyers had also claimed that his wife had also attacked him during the confrontation, but surveillance footage proved that claim wrong.

The trial in the murder case is being live-streamed online, a first time in the country. The trial has now reached its final stage with the prosecution presenting their summation of the case on 2 May. They have asserted that Nukenova wasn’t just murdered, she was systematically abused. 

Notably, a jury is hearing the case, an uncommon practice in Kazakhstan. Jury trials were introduced in Kazakhstan only in 2007, and have been used in only a handful of cases.

Reports say that Bishimbayev is a typical member of the country’s wealthy governing elite, and they are concerned that even if he is found guilty, he will be able to avoid proper punishment, as was the case with a prior conviction. Bishimbayev was arrested in 2017 on bribery accusations and sentenced to ten years in jail, however, he was released after less than three years due to an amnesty and parole.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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