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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Authorities Nix Appeal Over Pavlik

After almost two years of review, Russian legal officials have refused to rehabilitate the grandfather of Pavlik Morozov, the Soviet icon of party zeal who turned in his own parents and was killed by other relatives in revenge.

During Soviet times, Pavlik was held up as a role model by Soviet schools for informing on his father, who had resisted the Communist authorities in Gerasimovka in the Urals region. After his father's arrest, Pavlik, 14, was murdered by angry relatives.

Schools, collective farms and youth clubs around the country used to be named after Pavlik and statues of him decorated the streets of Moscow, Yekaterinburg and Gerasimovka.

The Pavlik Morozov cult died with communism, and several years ago, the branch of the Memorial human rights group in Kurgan in the Urals filed a request to rehabilitate the boy's relatives. The group, devoted to clearing the names of victims of dictator Josef Stalin, said Morozov's relatives f both grandparents, his cousin and his uncle, found guilty of his murder and sentenced to execution in 1932 f were "victims of Communist repressions" and had been convicted on insufficient evidence.

The Prosecutor General's Office studied the case for two years and decided to refuse rehabilitation. This week, Russia's Supreme Court considered the decision and supported it, ruling that those involved had committed a criminal act and had been punished according to the law.

"According to the laws of the time, this murder was exactly what it was believed to be back then," Nikolai Vlasenko, an official with the rehabilitation department of the Prosecutor General's Office was quoted as saying by the Vremya MN newspaper. "It was a terrorist act on the grounds of class hatred."

Pavlik found out that his father, Trofim, the head of the village council, was helping peasants evade taxes and had made fake documents for people sentenced to exile. He informed on him and testified against him in court.

The grandfather, Sergei Morozov, and Pavlik's cousin Daniil murdered the boy and his brother, who happened to be with him collecting berries in the forest. The ultimate fate of the father, Trofim, sentenced to 10 years in prison, is unknown.