ST. PETERSBURG, October 13 (RAPSI, Mikhail Telekhov) - The Chamber of Lawyers of St. Petersburg will decide whether attorney Ivan Pavlov should be disbarred due to his refusal to sign a pledge of secrecy in a treason case against former journalist Ivan Safronov, lawyer Alexander Meleshko has told RAPSI.

The hearing date is not yet scheduled.

In early October, the Kuibyshevsky court of St. Petersburg terminated proceedings initiated by the Russian Justice Ministry against Pavlov for allegedly disclosing information related to a police investigation. The Ministry of Justice dropped its claim against the Chamber, the Council of which refused to punish the defense lawyer for refusing to sign a non-disclosure agreement on the data of the preliminary investigation in the Safronov case. 

The case against Pavlov is related to an article published by Vedomosti about Ivan Safronov accused of treason. Investigators believe the lawyer gave the newspaper a copy of the decision to bring the journalist to criminal prosecution and told information agencies and Kommersant newspaper about an interrogation of a secret witness in Safronov’s case.

Under the respective articles of the Russian Criminal Code, the charges brought against the lawyer envisage punishment in the form of compulsory work for up to 480 hours, or correctional labor for up to two years, or detention for up to three months. 

The lawyer has left Russia.

Pavlov is known for his work for human rights association "Team 29", which provides legal assistance to Safronov and other defendants in high-profile cases.