To: The Chief of the USSR Supreme Council on Correctional Agencies (GUIT)
A Statement from: Elena Lapienienė, residing in Vilnius, Dauguviečio 5-11.
My husband Vladas Lapienis, born in 1906, is serving his sentence in Mordovia (Tengushev Rayon, Barashev, U4R 385/3-5).
Labor camp authorities have already punished him twice by confining him to a punishment call, and now are threatening to punish him with PKT (prison-type facility) because he supposedly refused to work.
In fact, my husband retired in 1966 and was often sick. One and a half years of imprisonment have completely broken his health. After speaking with my husband for barely several minutes, the camp physician wrote that a "physicians' commission" determined that my husband is capable of performing hard physical work. The camp authorities are forcing him to carry coal, stoke furnaces and perform strenuous work which only a healthy person can handle. Moreover, my husband is being forced to sew gloves, although camp authorities know that he cannot perform such work because of his weak eyesight. When my husband refused to perform work which his health will not permit, the camp authorities began to impose various penalties on him.
Please direct the camp administration to refrain from persecuting my husband with strenuous work and rescind the other penalties: punishment cell, ban on receiving packages this year, on having visitors and on purchasing food products from the camp store.
April 10, 1978 E. Lapienė
A similar statement was addressed to the head of the Medical Administration of the USSR Domestic Affairs Ministry.
At the end of April, (Mrs) Lapienienė travelled to Mordovia to visit her husband. She was allowed a brief visit and permitted to give him some food products. Lapienis related that on March 24th two camp physicians, in the presence of Major Aleksandrov, examined his health, certified him as second group disabled and assigned him to work six hours a day in the sewing factory.
Prisoners complain about Major Aleksandrov's cruelty.