wake up anticipating a miracle because for being good, they will get the desired gift, and for being bad — a stick. We imagined that this year, St. Nicholas visited the anti-corruption bodies and awarded each of them for the results of their work.
In 2021, NABU detectives and SAPO prosecutors jointly exposed several high-profile schemes and served corrupt officials with charges. Among them are:
- Yurii Zontov, brother of the odious head of the KAC Pavlo Vovk, who was caught red-handed when receiving a bribe of USD 100,000;
- Hennadii Trukhanov, mayor of Odesa, businessman Volodymyr Halaternyk and co., who are suspected of illegal seizure of UAH 689 mln from the local budget and 15.9 hectares of land of the territorial community of Odesa;
- ex-head of the Kharkiv aviation enterprise, who was served with charges of embezzlement of USD 1.93 mln and EUR 553,240;
- three officials of Ukrzaliznytsia, who were exposed on embezzlement of UAH 11.8 mln during the procurement of coal for heating passenger cars;
- member of the Commission for Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries, who was caught when receiving a bribe of USD 90,000.
As well as many others.
Panels of judges of the HACC passed sentences in respect of:
- Olena Zhyvtsova, ex-head of one of the District Courts of the Kherson region, was imprisoned for 5.5 years, banned from holding positions in public authorities for 3 years with confiscation of all property;
- Mykhailo Pak, judge of the Mukachevo City District Court, was imprisoned for 7 years, his property was confiscated, and he was banned from holding the position of judge for 3 years. His accomplice, Oleh Makovskyi, was imprisoned for 6 years with confiscation of half of the property;
- Hanna Bilyk, judge of the Brovarskyi City District Court, was imprisoned for 6 years with deprivation of the right to hold office for 3 years and confiscation of a car and land plot in Brovary;
- Ivan Tulyk, judge of the Rakhiv District Court of Zakarpattia, was imprisoned for 6 years, all property was confiscated, and he deprived of the right to hold the position of judge for 3 years, but later the HACC Appeals Chamber reduced the sentence to 5 years of imprisonment;
- Pavlo Medentsev, ex-judge of the Economic Court of the Odesa oblast, imprisoned for 9 years with deprivation of the right to hold the positions of a judge or government representative for 3 years, confiscation of all property, and special confiscation of UAH 250,000;
- Vadym Halichyi, judge of the Zhovtnevyi District Court of Dnipro, was imprisoned for 3.5 years with deprivation of the right to hold positions in courts, law enforcement agencies, and the bar for 3 years, but later, AP of the HACC reduced the sentence to 2.5 years in prison;
- Anton Haidur, judge of the Mizhhirskyi District Court in Zakarpattia, was sentenced by the HACC to 5 years in prison, with deprivation of right to hold the position of judge for 3 years, and confiscation of all property.
In addition, sentences were passed concerning Mykhailo Hrabchuk, ex-director of the state enterprise “Chornobyl Spetskombinat,” Orest Furdychko, manager of the Institute of Agroecology and Environmental Management of National Academy of Agrarian Sciences, Serhii Nerukh, the person involved in the Sky Moon ship case, ex-MP Oleksandr Presman, and others.
However, as of now, only the sentences against Tulyk, Halichyi, Medentsev, and Presman entered into legal force. Other sentences have not yet entered into legal force due to the non-expiration of the 30-day period for contesting it or through direct appeal review.
Moreover, the Anti-Corruption Court has recently passed a sentence by agreement with a real imprisonment for the first time. A plea agreement is an agreement between the prosecutor and the defense party to admit the accused person’s/suspect’s guilt and to impose a punishment agreed between the two parties to the process.
The HACC made a decision on civil forfeiture. The first person to feel the effect of the mechanism was MP Illia Kyva. In August 2021, the HACC recovered UAH 1.2 million from him in favor of the national budget, in the pulp pit case.
The ARMA selected the manager for the “Medvedchuk’s pipe”, the part of the Samara-Western direction oil pipeline and for the first time, referred the most expensive asset worth UAH 93 mln for realization at open electronic bidding. This was a successful case of selling more than 3 tons of seized sunflower oil at market value. In general, in 2021, the ARMA provided the largest revenues to the national budget (UAH 38.6 mln) from managers of seized assets than in the last three years.
This year, the NACP has launched several digital tools with the help of partners:
- the POLITDATA register of political parties reporting, which allows political parties to submit reports online, rather than in paper form;
- the updated Register of Corrupt Officials, where you can now find out the number of corrupt officials in each oblast and verify the authenticity of certificates by QR code;
- the “Hidden Interests” portal, which helps to identify connections that may indicate a conflict of interest.
However, St. Nicholas decided to put the NACP on the Naughty List because had “distinguished itself” by dubious decisions. In August, the head of the National Agency Oleksandr Novikov issued an order that initiated a new procedure for “quick” checks of declarations that contradicted the law. Moreover, the National Agency still has not made public the rules for logical and arithmetic control and has not resolved the problem of monitoring the lifestyle of declarants.
The SAPO selection commission can’t choose the head of the institution for more than a year. The competition was permanently sabotaged by members of the commission. Of course, this is not the fault of the SAPO itself — the Specialized Prosecutor’s Office is very much waiting for the new head, but someone needs to get a stick for this. On December 21, the commission has to hold the final stage of selection — interviews with the finalists. And then, before or after the holidays, it will be known who will lead the SAPO: Andrii Syniuk or Oleksandr Klymenko.
Neither the ARMA has a manager, and it’s a shame that even after the long-awaited start of the competition, the selection process cannot be called 100% transparent. The commission did not have a procedure for holding a competition and rules of work at the stage of starting accepting documents. Moreover, the commission so far has no methodology for evaluating candidates during interviews. This needs to be corrected because it is the methodology that should clearly define the criteria for evaluating integrity. Who and for what should be given the stick in this case is up to anyone to decide.
There are only two weeks left before the start of the new anti-corruption season. We really want the anti-corruption bodies to learn from 2021 and continue the right movement to fight corruption. And, perhaps, next year, there will be fewer sticks, and more actions for which the bodies can be put on the Nice List and considered as an example.
We really want the anti-corruption bodies to learn from 2021 and continue the right movement to fight corruption. And, perhaps, next year, there will be fewer sticks, and more actions for which the bodies can be put on the Nice List and considered as an example.