Olympic Medalist Aliaksandra Herasimenia Facing Criminal Charges in Belarus For Anti-Government Behavior

Aug 2, 2012; London, United Kingdom; Aliaksandra Herasimenia (BLR) on the podium with her silver medal after finishing second in the women's 100m freestyle final during the London 2012 Olympic Games at Aquatics Centre. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports
Photo Courtesy: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports

Olympic Medalist Aliaksandra Herasimenia Facing Criminal Charges in Belarus

Three-time Olympic medalist Aliaksandra Herasimenia is facing criminal proceedings by the Belarusian government for her involvement as a leader of the Belarusian Sport Solidarity Foundation. According to reports out of Belarus, Herasimenia and her co-leader of the BSSF, Alyaksandr Apeykin, are accused of spreading false information concerning last year’s Belarusian presidential election.

“On the Internet and in the mass media, (Herasimenia and Apeykin) made appeals to foreign states and international organizations to take action aimed at harming the national security of the Republic of Belarus,” stated a press release by the Belarusian government.

By speaking out against the goverment, Herasimenia and Apeykin are accused of damaging their country’s reputation and imparting financial damage. The government claims that Herasimenia cost Belarus the opportunity to host various international sports competitions, and the subsequent financial boost they would have brought. If convicted of harming Belarus’ national security, Herasimenia faces five years in prison.

In August 2020, Herasimenia helped stage protests which urged the resignation of Alyaksndr Lukashenka as Belarus’ president and which urged fair and free elections.

In the pool, Herasimenia won silver medals in the 50 freestyle and 100 freestyle at the 2012 Olympic Games in London. Four years later, she added a bronze medal in the 50 free. During her career, Herasimenia also served a two-year ban for a positive doping test.

 


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