Karen Manucharyan, the advocate of the man prosecuted in connection with last May's mass explosions of balloon during an election campaign gathering in Yerevan, today announced in court that the organizers of the meeting had been warned about the possible balloon blast.
Defendant Serob Bozoyan, who is facing heavy fines and up to five years in prison under Article 279 of the Armenian Criminal Code, reportedly warned the organizers against the explosion if they did not meet security requirements. However, the organizers had agreed to fill the balloons with methane: they would have been charged five times more if the balloons were filled with helium gas.
Hundreds of gas balloons exploded in Republic Square on May 4, 2011, during an election campaign meeting organized by the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK). The explosion was followed by fire, with melted rubber falling on the event participants. At least 154 people were hospitalized with serious burns and injuries. Some of them underwent plastic surgery. Later it was revealed that the balloons were filled with inflammable natural gas by several individuals in a Yerevan apartment. Bozoyan is one of them.
Bozoyan is charged with the production and sale of goods not meeting security standards and causing harm to two or more people.
The trial is continuing in the Court of General Jurisdiction of Yerevan's Kentron and Nork-Marash administrative districts.