The selection commission for the position of the NABU Director is actively moving forward according to the plan.
From today, candidates begin interviews for integrity and competence, which will last until March 4.
Twenty-one applicants have reached this stage. So, now the commission will consider:
– compliance of candidates’ income with their expenses and property,
– the way of life of the participants of the competition,
– the level of their professional ethics,
– political neutrality and other issues.
Below, we publish the main conversations with candidates for the post of the NABU Director.
Head of the “War Department” of the Prosecutor General’s Office
Most of all, he was asked about the property, in particular, the actual cost of the candidate’s cars, aspects of Bielousov’s sale of his deceased mother’s apartment in Kharkiv, as well as details of the purchase by the candidate’s mother-in-law of an apartment in Kyiv, where Bielousov and his wife now live. The commission was interested in what funds were used to buy the apartment in the capital, and based on what arrangements, Bielousov now lives there.
Moreover, members of the commission were interested in why Bielousov decided to change the scope of his activities. He now heads the “war department” of the Prosecutor General’s Office, and since he is integrated into the current system of government, he may continue to be politically biased to some extent. Bielousov replied that the NABU attracted him precisely in terms of the potential to work there as a leader.
“Nothing can be worse than stealing money from the budget during the war. That is why I decided to submit my candidacy for this competition,” the candidate said.
And when asked about his brother Andrii Bielousov, who now heads the Kamianske City Council, Bielousov said that he tried to abstract himself from publications in the media about his brother, but relied on specific facts about his activities. In the event that there is a suspicion of committing a corruption crime, in which his brother will be involved, Bielousov will do everything for an honest investigation, and he will be removed from the process on the basis of a conflict of interest.
Let us remind you that TI Ukraine experts had a lot of property questions to him, but the commission had even more.
Thus, the Burtovyi family owns a lot of land in Cherkasy Oblast. The candidate’s wife owns more than 5 hectares of land, and this is although she is not engaged in farming, but is a bank employee.
Burtovyi’s mother, as we wrote in our material, owns 60 land plots with a total value of more than UAH 2 mln, while, according to tax statements, her official income was UAH 513,000.
The candidate explained this by the fact that the statement indicated the official earnings of his mother, while she had bought the land for income from the farm. To the remark of the chair of the commission that such income should also be taxed and recorded in the statements, Burtovyi replied that his mother paid all the taxes. And that his parents were one of the first farmers in Cherkasy Oblast.
Moreover, the commission asked to share the practice of how the candidate managed to save so much money. To this, Burtovyi replied that this practice was due to the “upbringing of his and his wife.” Allegedly, both of them had grown up in large families in the countryside, so they were very economical. Now, they spend less than half of their income, everything else they put aside, and their parents who keep agriculture send them all “environmentally friendly” products.
Many questions were also asked about cars in the candidate’s family, since for some of them, the appraised value is indicated in the candidate’s declaration, and for others — the actual value.
At the same time, Burtovyi gave a strange answer to the question about buying a car. According to him, he bought the car while working in the NABU, he almost does not use it, and in general, it is a car “in memory of his dead colleagues from the previous work in the criminal investigation department.” But what that meant, the candidate did not explain.
Interestingly, the candidate could not recall the “scientific novelty” of his dissertation at the first attempt.
In addition, Burtovyi and his brother overcovered 250 square meters of the roof in the outpatient clinic in his native village for UAH 140,000, the candidate himself paid half the cost of the work. When asked by the commission how they managed to make such a significant repair so cheaply, Burtovyi replied that it was purely the cost of materials (according to him, there were not many), and the TV, which was put in the outpatient clinic, was cheap because it was of Chinese production.
Head of the Department of Vinnytsia Regional Prosecutor’s Office
There were many questions to him as well, and not just about property.
Vikul bought an apartment in Vinnytsia under a power of attorney and at the expense of his mother, which she earned as a “migrant worker.” Basically, the candidate’s sister lives in the house, but he plans to re-register the housing to his mother after her return from Norway to Ukraine.
In general, there were numerous questions about the property and the currency funds with which it was purchased. Vikul confirmed that for 20 years, his mother lived in Norway as an illegal migrant, had no legal income and didn’t pay taxes, and received the right to live only after the beginning of the full-scale war. At the same time, for a long time, she was sending the earned money to her son in Ukraine, and after February 24, Vikul’s wife with children left for Norway.
The candidate was marked with very striking quotes.
As far as the understated estimated value of cars in sales contracts is concerned, Vikul allegedly mentioned the words of the person who conducted the valuation of this property: “I am an appraiser, I see it that way.”
And when asked why the candidate kept funds in the accounts of three different banks, Vikul replied: “so as not to put all the eggs in one basket.”
In his social networks in posts about the war of russia against Ukraine, Vikul wrote that the conflict was the fault of both sides. When asked what exactly was Ukraine’s fault in the events of 2014 and 2022, the candidate said that the answer to this question would be very long.
In his opinion, if the Ukrainian state behaved differently, everything would be different, for example, in the language issue; he also noted that there were not enough attempts to refute russian propaganda. “We are not guilty in general, but we could have done more to bring our victory closer.”
When asked how he plans to communicate on social networks after he heads the NABU, Vikul replied: “My personal thoughts are my personal thoughts, and work is work.” He called his previous posts “more philosophical.”
Deputy Head of Kyiv Oblast
When asked why Vlasiuk applied for the director of the NABU, which he repeatedly criticized, the candidate replied that the main reason was the deepest sense of social responsibility. Vlasiuk says that he puts his social duty in the first place, seeks to improve the NABU, and his criticism of the Bureau was constructive because he saw the shortcomings of the institution. That is why he plans to constructively correct them when he is elected.
There were many questions to the candidate about the bitcoins that belonged to him and the ways in which he mined cryptocurrency. The thing is that there are currently no prescribed rules for declaring such property, so, it is unclear from Vlasiuk’s declaration how much money the candidate has in this form, and how it was received. For its part, the commission expressed a reservation that Vlasiuk could not provide the full amount of supporting documents that would undoubtedly prove the legality of such a business and confirm the declared profits.
Moreover, the candidate was asked a lot about his past conflicts with anti-corruption bodies. Thus, Vlasiuk admitted that he had had a dispute with the head of the NACP, Oleksandr Novikov, but after that, they have often met and are now on the same side.
When asked about his plans to cooperate with the SAPO, which he has also repeatedly criticized, Vlasiuk says that he has the right to express his personal opinion on law enforcement officers, since he is a lawyer, and his criticism has always been constructive. Vlasiuk is convinced that after becoming a director, he will be able to make use of his experience enough to improve the work of both detectives and prosecutors.
The commission also mentioned the times when Vlasiuk was a lawyer in the Altayur company, whose servers stored the NACP data. In particular, the commission asked to comment on Vlasiuk’s calls to delete all NACP data after the scandalous decision of the CCU to recognize the powers of the National Agency on the control and verification of declarations as unconstitutional.
According to Vlasiuk, the property of his client was then seized by the NABU and the court, but still remained under the control of the NACP, for which the Agency did not pay. And after the decision of the CCU, representatives of Altayur asked on their behalf to appeal to the NACP to stop doing this. Vlasiuk believes that the client could have done this, and he fulfilled this request as a lawyer. “So don’t associate a lawyer with his client.”
The commission had mostly property questions to the candidate. The first concerned the Dodge Journey car. According to the candidate, his family bought the car with technical damage after the accident. According to Vorvul, it was purchased for USD 4,498. He also noted that he had spent UAH 73,000 on repairs. In total, the cost of the car was UAH 290,000. The source was the candidate’s salary.
There were also questions about the land belonging to the candidate. Thus, Vorvul received a plot of 2 hectares in the Kharkiv region in 2016. The candidate explained that he had received the plot in accordance with the right of each citizen to 2 hectares for agriculture. Therefore, the local council allocated the land in response to Vorvul’s request. At the same time, he notes that he had no influence on this decision because he had worked as a prosecutor in another district. According to Vorvul, the plot is now used by his wife — she grows agricultural products and declares all her income.
The commission also asked why this land plot was not reflected in the declarations of 2016 and 2017. The candidate replied that at that time there were some technical malfunctions in filing declarations. In particular, he does not exclude that he did not indicate the plot because of his own carelessness. Later, he entered information about the plot in all subsequent declarations.
Head of the Investigative Department of the Territorial Department of the SBI
There were both property questions and questions about his professional activities to the candidate.
The commission asked about the procurement of a land plot and a house of 268 square meters in Lukashivka, Vinnytsia Oblast. The candidate replied that his parents had bought the plot and the house, and he at that time was a 4th year student and did not have any income. According to him, the parents could afford such a purchase because his mother was an entrepreneur since 1999. He also provided documents confirming that his mother took a loan for this property and paid it in 3 months.
The commission was also interested in the cars owned by Hupiak and his parents: Opel Zafira (2013), Seat Ibiza (2005), and Toyota Rav 4 (2021). As for the first two cars, the candidate said that they had been bought by his father. He also noted that there was all evidence of the ability of parents to make these purchases. Among them, he mentioned the sale of real estate in 2010, for which his family received UAH 363,000 (USD 46,000) and a land plot for which parents received UAH 168,000 (USD 5,965).
Toyota Rav 4 was bought in half with his mother, said Hupiak. According to him, his share in the purchase of the car was UAH 464,894. The argument for the availability of such funds was the sale of a plot to which he had a partial property right in 2018. He received UAH 393,000 for the sale. Hupiak also said that he had UAH 94,000 of savings and, upon dismissal, received compensation for a vacation of UAH 205,000.
The commission had several questions regarding his professional activities: concerning the cases the candidate worked on, as well as his work as a leader. Thus, the commission pointed out that according to the official investigation, it was found that there were errors in the actions of Hupiak and therefore the prosecutors of the department performed their duties improperly. However, he himself was not brought to disciplinary responsibility.
The candidate replied that he had learned about the conclusions of the internal investigation when he was already working in the SBI. According to the candidate, it was said that prosecutors delayed the submission of indictments to the court. At the same time, Hupiak noted that, in his opinion, the full control the document flow of prosecutors on the case is not part of the leader’s responsibility. And he provided the explanations that would have prevented such a problem.
Head of Bucha District Prosecutor’s Office of Kyiv Oblast
The commission was interested in information about the property belonging to the candidate’s wife, in particular her apartment and car. Since the apartment was given to Kravchenko’s wife as a present, commission members asked in what relationship the wife was with the donor. However, Kravchenko explained that this housing had become the property of his wife long before their marriage, he had no relation to that property, and had no information about who it was from.
And the wife’s car was purchased in 2017, it was bought in the United States, and according to the then clarifications of the NACP, it was unclear whether customs and other fees should have been indicated in the declaration. Therefore, the wife indicated all the accompanying costs for the car, including logistics, in the declaration. Therefore, the amount in the declaration is greater than the estimated value of the car determined at customs.
The commission was interested in why Kravchenko had to get a lawyer’s license if, at that time, he had a permanent job in the prosecutor’s office. The candidate replied that he had made this decision after the reform of the prosecutor’s office began, so, he did not know what his future would be, and decided to get the right to practice law. He was interested in this right, but he did not plan to engage in advocacy from the beginning. His lawyer’s license has now been revoked.
The candidate refuted media reports that he was spreading false information about the whereabouts of fugitive president Yanukovych, in whose case he acted as prosecution. According to Kravchenko, the data that Yanukovych lived in Rostov had been received from the Prosecutor General’s Office of russia, but they had turned out to be untrue. And Kravchenko has repeatedly publicly reported this in the media.
In addition, the commission was interested in Kravchenko’s relations with his former supervisor, Anatolii Matios. The candidate, for his part, assured that at the time of his work in the military prosecutor’s office they had had only professional relations, and Matios did not affect the independence of Kravchenko. And after the Yanukovych case, he never saw Matios again.
Determining the level of political neutrality of Kravchenko, the commission was interested in how much he was influenced by family members. The candidate’s father-in-law is a member of the party “For the Future,” and his wife was an assistant to MPs from the Party of Regions and the Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc at different times. Kravchenko said that he had confirmed his political impartiality when he had convicted Viktor Yanukovych as a prosecutor. The family has no influence on him.
It also seemed strange to the commission that among the persons who could provide a recommendation, Kravchenko chose Judge Deviatko, who convicted Maidan activists. To this, the candidate replied that the matter regarding Deviatko’s lack of integrity is untrue — the HQCJ did not find violations in the actions of the judge. He was mentioned as a person who could provide a recommendation because he had been a judge in many cases of Kravchenko and could tell more about the work of the candidate.
As the head of the Bucha prosecutor’s office, it was Kravchenko who investigated war crimes in Bucha after the liberation of the city from the russian army, identified war criminals, and opened cases against them. When asked why he wanted to leave such an important job and head the NABU, Kravchenko replied: “I want to go down in history as the future head of the NABU, who, together with the SAPO, defeated corruption in Ukraine. That’s my only goal.”
Head of the State Inspectorate for Architecture and Urban Planning of Ukraine
The current competition in the NABU is not the first in which Kryvonos participated. Thus, in 2016, he won the competition for the post of Director of the Odesa territorial Department of the NABU, but refused it and returned to work in customs. When asked by the commission why this happened, Kryvonos said that it was then that a previously closed criminal case had been groundlessly opened to discredit him. The case itself was closed earlier due to the lack of the essence of the crime.
Traditionally, Kryvonos was asked many questions about the property, in particular, about the land plots of the candidate and his wife. Kryvonos replied that both his parents and relatives of his wife have their own farms, and they also have shares in this property.
When asked by the commission how it happened that, according to media reports, the candidate was wanted for distributing money to students to vote for the Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc, Kryvonos replied that he was not wanted because he was not hiding. According to him, during his student days, Kryvonos headed the student government, and in 2007, he and his fellows confronted the university leadership, which wanted to influence the students’ vote.
The commission was also interested in Kryvonos’ relations with various officials — Vice Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov, former head of Odesa Oblast Mykhailo Saakashvili, MP Tetiana Plachkova, and Oleksii Kuleba, former head of Kyiv Oblast and now Deputy Head of the Presidential Office. The candidate replied that with Fedorov, Saakashvili, and Kuleba he had exclusively professional relations, and with Plachkova he had never any contacts at all.
When asked a general question of how he would avoid officials because he used to work a lot with influential government representatives, Kryvonos replied that during his work at the Odesa customs, both he and his colleagues faced a very strong opposition. And his job in the State Inspectorate for Architecture and Urban Planning of Ukraine is “not an easy walk among the trees.” And despite the support of some government officials, this work itself is a challenge. Therefore, he remains impartial, and as the head of the NABU, he will continue to adhere to the standards of impartiality and integrity.
The commission also asked whether Kryvonos saw corruption problems in the construction system, and how he in general responded to corruption factors in the State Inspectorate for Architecture and Urban Planning of Ukraine. The candidate replied that the sphere of construction remained among those mostly corrupted, and it was to combat this that Kryvonos’ work in this institution was directed. And he himself appealed to law enforcement five times regarding bribes: twice to the NABU and three times to the SBI.
Finally, Kryvonos said: “It was a very great honor and a great opportunity for me to report that the reform that we had conducted in the State Inspectorate for Architecture and Urban Development was successful, it was really an anti-corruption reform. We could not have imagined two years ago that the head of the State Inspectorate for Architecture and Urban Planning of Ukraine would be able to apply for the Director of the NABU because everyone knew how the back offices worked and how much they demanded, I am very happy that the commission did not have such questions.”
Head of the NABU Detectives Department, now mobilized as an officer of the SBU reserve
Most of the questions the commission had were about the close relatives of the candidate. After all, Naumiuk’s parents lived in Luhansk after 2014 and left only since the beginning of the full-scale war. His brother worked in russia after the occupation of part of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.
As for the property questions, there were not many. In particular, they concerned an apartment of more than 200 square meters in Kharkiv and cars bought by the candidate’s parents. Regarding the apartment, which cost UAH 1 mln, Naumiuk said that that had been, first of all, an unsuccessful investment because the apartment turned out to be with a hidden mortgage agreement (currently, there are courts regarding it). And secondly, according to the candidate, the father bought this apartment with a partner and could afford it from savings and income from entrepreneurial activities. Naumiuk gave reasoned explanations about the cars Kia Ceed (2008 production), Volkswagen Polo (2012 production), and Ford Fusion (2010 production), which are registered to the parents.
And now to the main part of this interview. After the occupation of the Luhansk region by russia, the candidate’s parents remained in Luhansk. According to the candidate, they regularly came to visit their grandchildren in Kyiv. Naumiuk says that due to constant artillery shelling, the safest way to the unoccupied territory of Ukraine was through the territory of russia. The commission also asked about his brother’s work in a leading position in a russian bank. Naumiuk confirmed that his brother headed the department of corporate customer lending at PJSC Otkrytie in Moscow. According to Naumiuk, the bank was managed by a businessman Bieliayev, who, due to a conflict with the Putin regime, lost the bank and emigrated to the West.
The candidate also confirmed that his father and brother received russian citizenship in 2015. But according to the candidate, the brother left for the United States in 2017 and now has no relationship with russia. Parents went to his brother in the United States after the beginning of the full-scale invasion of russia. It was in the United States that Naumiuk’s relatives appealed to the Consulate of russia to renounce the citizenship of russia.
Serhii Naumiuk has been working in law enforcement for 26 years. In 1996-2000 he served in the Ministry of Internal Affairs. In 2000-2015 and 2015-2022 (with a break), he worked in the SBU.
Senior Detective, Deputy Head of the NABU Subdivision
There were many questions to the candidate. They concerned houses of parents in Pokrovsk and Hostomel and cars that were registered to them, as well as property that was registered personally to the candidate. Nestertsov said that the Honda Accord car was given to him by his parents for his birthday. “I was told that I had a limit of USD 20,000,” said Nestertsov. As for the house in Pokrovsk, as well as other property registered to parents (including father’s Toyota RAV4), the candidate explained them with the savings of parents and their entrepreneurial activities. According to the candidate, from 1984 to 1996, his father worked at the mine, now he receives a miner’s pension. The candidate says that back then, the salary of miners was higher than the average salary in Ukraine. Since 1996, the parents opened an enterprise, it has grown into a factory. Nestertsov assures that there were no comments on the activities of the parents.
The commission had many questions regarding the candidate’s cash savings of USD 80,000. Nestertsov says that he began to save money since school. And allegedly he managed to save a lot during his years of studying at the SBU Academy. At the same time, he did not provide any clarifications regarding the financial support that was provided to him during his studies at the academy.
There were also questions about articles in the media that discredited the candidate, to which Nestertsov replied that these were paid-for materials. According to him, one of the materials concerned the case which was investigated by his department. It involved the theft of funds in green energy.
Prosecutor of the Department for Prevention of Offenses in the Prosecutor’s Office of the General Inspectorate of the Prosecutor General’s Office
Members of the Opishniak family own several land plots in Zakarpattia. Some of them are registered to the wife’s parents. Opishniak explained that he and his wife’s parents appealed to local councils and received land plots free of charge, using the right of every citizen to a one-time receipt of a land plot.
He also bought an Opel Vectra car. In 2008, the owner of the car initially gave him a power of attorney because the candidate did not have enough money. And then he gave an unlimited power of attorney to dispose of this car. In general, according to the candidate, he paid about UAH 88,000 (USD 18,000 for the car).
Interestingly, the candidate’s mother gave him UAH 40,000 in 2018 and in the subsequent years UAH 37,000 and UAH 13,000. However, his mother officially has no income in Ukraine. The candidate explained such gifts by the fact that since 1998, his mother went to Italy. She is officially employed, received a residence permit and a work permit. From her earnings in Italy, she sent money to her son.
When asked by the commission whether he paid taxes on his mother’s gifts, the candidate replied that he didn’t. He said he didn’t know he had to pay taxes for them. “If the tax service had demanded to pay, I would have paid,” said Opishniak.
Head of the NABU Internal Control Department
Before that, Roman Osypchuk took part in the competition for the head of the NACP, but did not pass.
Among the property questions, the commission was interested in how the candidate sold an apartment in Luhansk in 2017. Osypchuk said that that apartment was registered to his parents and his sister. After participating in the ATO, he realized that he would not be able to return to Luhansk. Osypchuk’s family concluded an agreement in writing and on the basis of this, under the Ukrainian law, sold the apartment. The candidate noted that he did not conduct any transactions under the laws of the pseudo-republics and the terrorist state of russia.
The commission also had questions about a considerable loan of UAH 2.6 mln, which was taken by the candidate’s wife. The commission also noted that the family of the candidate paid the amount of UAH 1.8 mln in less than a year. The candidate explained that his family changed their mind about living in the apartment they had bought because the child went to school at the place of residence. And to buy an apartment near the school, they had to apply for a loan until they sold another apartment. Thanks to the sale, they covered the largest part of the loan.
The commission also noted that Osypchuk’s wife was a lawyer. She has long been a lawyer, so, the commission asked how the candidate felt about the fact that his wife could protect the interests of quite different people. In response, the candidate said that the wife was not a lawyer in criminal cases, and in general, they did not share the details of the work with each other.
Senior Detective, Head of the NABU Detectives Department
The commission had many questions about the candidate’s property. The apartment, which Pavlushchyk’s father purchased in 2014, was declared at a price which was, according to the commission, four times lower than the market price at that time. The candidate replied that the parents considered that amount to be real and raised him with an increased sense of justice.
Further, the commission mentioned a loan in Oschadbank from 2018, which Pavlushchyk did not immediately mention in the declaration. The candidate explains that, according to the rules, this type of loan should be declared only if the debt exceeds a certain limit — which he did already in 2019.
At the interview, the commission was interested in the income of the mother of Pavlushchyk’s cohabitant. She, saving money from pensions and small incomes of an individual entrepreneur, in 2020, was able to give her daughter UAH 280,000, buy a Hyundai for UAH 290,000, and go abroad — to moscow. The candidate replied that he did not know anything about the circumstances of her life in 2020 because they had barely known each other at the time, and it was during this interview that he learned about the fact of her mother’s trip to moscow.
Over the past 15 years, Pavlushchyk has traveled abroad many times, three of which after the invasion, since NABU detectives are not subject to mobilization. The candidate explained this by the fact that he went to his children in Romania.
The candidate also violated traffic rules twice, once even got into an accident in an official car. He explained it with terrible weather.
Finally, the commission was interested in a possible conflict of interest because for some time, Pavlushchyk, his cohabitant, and brother worked in the NABU simultaneously. The candidate explained that they had had no contacts at work, and now his brother and cohabitant no longer work in the NABU.
Head of the Department for the Study of Prosecution Problems of the National Prosecution Academy of Ukraine
The commission had the least number of questions to her, which was noted by Mykola Kucheriavenko. Plotnikova was asked why her real income from various organizations did not coincide slightly with the declared ones, to which she replied that she honestly had indicated the amounts that she had received to her accounts at the time of declaration. She indicated only one payment from the NGO “JurFem” by mistake.
The candidate was asked about the incomes of her parents. Namely, her mother owns a ship in the Kherson region. Plotnikova explained that that was just a small boat, and not a “big yacht” — the father registered it to the mother before his death.
The commission was interested in the large income of the candidate, more than UAH 1 mln, which she almost didn’t spend, according to the declarations. The candidate noted her financial literacy and said that she had spent her savings in 2018 on the treatment of her father’s deadly disease. And now she provides for her mother and grandmother, who live in the occupation.
It was during the interview that Plotnikova learned for the first time from the commission that her mother had been found guilty of committing an accident in a Mercedes-Benz car in 2016. The candidate replied that it was the first time she heard about such an accident, her family had never owned such cars, but she would have to clarify this episode with her mother. In the end, the members of the commission also acknowledged that this information could relate to the full namesake of the mother of the candidate.
Deputy Head of the Detectives Department of the NABU
The commission asked the candidate for a long time about his property. There were questions why Rykovtsev did not specify the source of income from the sale of an apartment in Odesa. The candidate replied that he actually did not receive the money because he was a partial owner only legally, but the UAH 300,000 received his mother.
Interestingly, in 2018, the candidate received a lot from his mother — a Toyota car, apartments in Kyiv and Odesa, as well as land in the Odesa region. All this property costs about UAH 2.5 mln, while the income of the mother is about UAH 400,000 — Rykovtsev explained this by the fact that his mother was engaged in investments, and condemned her “low culture of declaration” at that time.
The candidate himself “failed to mention” about UAH 20,000 in his 2018 declaration, received for leasing an apartment in Odesa, explaining this by technical errors and the fact that he could not find out the exact amount, since the fact of payment was controlled not by him, but by his parents. But according to him, taxes on rent are paid regularly and according to the law.
A separate episode of the interview was a question about cryptocurrency. The wife of the candidate purchased bitcoins in 2016 for almost UAH 200,000, and Rykovtsev provided the commission with a screenshot upon the request to confirm the current status of these assets.
The commission was interested in how the spouses were able to purchase the cryptocurrency and meet their needs, if in 2015, the salary of the candidate was about UAH 3,500, and at the end of the same year, the declaration did not indicate any savings. The candidate said that then he started working in the NABU and began to receive a higher salary, and the spouses had additional income, which is not in the declaration due to the fact that they did not reach the required limit.
The commission had a lot of property questions to him. In particular, the commission was interested in the grounds on which Rudenko acquired the right to use the apartment from Khamster Club LLC in 2002. The candidate explained that he had needed the apartment to register his place of residence because he had not had his own housing in Kyiv and does not have it now. He provided legal advice to the specified LLC, and with their permission, a free use agreement had been signed for the apartment. And he himself did not live there, does not live, and does not plan to live.
The commission was also interested in the source of funds for the purchase of a number of cars, which the candidate has been buying and selling for the last 20 years. According to Rudenko, all these operations were conducted at the expense of funds from sold cars and with the addition of his own, and he bought some cars on credit. However, not all documents regarding these cars are available to him at the moment.
There were questions from members of the commission about the house, belonging to the mother of the candidate. In 2011, she acquired ownership of a house in Irpin, and in 2015, she acquired ownership of the land under that house, so, the commission asked to explain the discrepancy. He says that he has nothing to do with this transaction, his brother was engaged in it. And the discrepancy, apparently, lies in the fact that first the property was bought, and then the land was privatized. Unfortunately, Rudenko has no documents regarding this transaction because the specified house is located in the part of Irpin that was occupied, so, the safe with these papers was destroyed.
But the commission had the most questions about the loan of UAH 1.7 mln, which Rudenko received from the Portal bank in 2019. According to the CV, he is a member of the supervisory board of this bank, so, the commission asked whether there could have been a conflict of interest in the case. According to Rudenko, this issue was decided by the bank’s board, while the supervisory board, and he personally, had nothing to do with this.
“Some kind of morality and the financial market are not exactly the same thing. There are strict rules in the financial market. As of today, the bank does not incur losses, as I noted, this loan ends this year, I have the opportunity to repay it. No one’s hurt. There were no claims from third parties that it was I who received it, and not someone else, this is not an example of receiving benefits,” Rudenko said.
The Commission was also interested in why the successful lawyer decided to apply to the NABU. Rudenko replied that after 2014, he devoted a lot of time to public activities, heard the opinions of people, and was dissatisfied with the level of corruption. Currently, as a football functionary, he interacted with the Football Federation, and came across examples of corruption. This prompted him to apply to the NABU.
At the same time, to confirm his impartiality, Rudenko indicated in the questionnaire his participation in competitions in the BES, the ARMA, and now the NABU, but did not specify any person who could provide him a recommendation. To that Rudenko replied that he had no such contacts among civil servants, and he believed that it would be unethical for any of the civil servants to provide him with a recommendation. All this is given the level of corruption in state bodies, and the results of the NABU’s work in the fight against corruption are “very ambiguous.” And the reputation of Rudenko and the results of his advocacy work speak for themselves.
First Deputy Head of Konotop District Prosecutor’s Office of Sumy Oblast
As far as the property was concerned, the candidate was asked about his official apartment in Sumy, which was later privatized. Udovychenko explained that this apartment was given to him when he was transferred to the service in the Sumy prosecutor’s office. In 2022, after gaining sufficient experience, he appealed to privatize this housing. Now, Udovychenko is selling his Sumy apartment because of “the martial law and the border region.”
The commission was interested in the cars of the candidate’s wife. In 2017, his wife bought a Volkswagen Passat for only… UAH 30,000. Udovychenko explained such a low cost by the fact that the car had been purchased at an auction of damaged US cars — the former owner “drowned” it in the lake. The car was repaired, sold four times more expensive; they added savings and bought a BMW car.
The candidate was a witness in two criminal proceedings. In one of them, the chief of police of Konotop demanded money from an agroforestry, but tried to accuse Udovychenko of provoking him to this crime. The candidate still doesn’t understand why the policeman wanted to “shift the responsibility” to him.
Finally, he was asked about his experience. His prosecutor’s office sends only 3-5 criminal proceedings for corruption crimes per year, and Udovychenko himself is confident in his integrity and justice. He is guided by the principle, “when you do not know how to act — act according to the law.”
Senior Detective — Head of the First Detective Department of the Third Detective Division of the NABU Main Detective Division
The commission had several property questions to the candidate. The first concerned the purchase of the Hyundai Accent in 2011 because the candidate did not specify its cost in the declaration. Tserkovnyi explained that he had lost the documents indicating the price.
The second concerned the car of his wife — Audi A4 in 2011 (allegedly a damaged car from the United States). Tserkovnyi said they had bought it for UAH 135,000.
Next were the questions on real estate and how the candidate had acquired it. As it turned out, the wife bought a house of 143 m² and land in Kryukivshchyna in 2017 for USD 10,000 — the funds of her mother and grandmother, who had sold their property for this. It was so cheap, he says, because it was not repaired and with shortcomings from the developer. After 2 years, with repairs, the cost was already USD 60,000.
The last question concerned disciplinary sanctions in the NABU. This was in 2017, since his subordinate did not register the funds seized during the search (Tserkovnyi himself was on vacation at that time), and he, as the head, did not take any measures.
Interestingly, according to the candidate’s questionnaire, it was his department that caught “red-handed” those corrupt officials that wanted to bribe the leadership of the NABU-SAPO for USD 5 mln so that the latter would close the case of ex-Minister of Ecology Mykola Zlochevskyi.
Head of the NABU Detectives Department
The commission had a number of property questions to the candidate, in particular, regarding his and his wife’s real estate in the Lviv region. Tsyvinskyi explained them all. Thus, his wife received a land plot from her aunt, and has a share in a private house near Lviv, which passed to her from her grandfather. Tsyvinskyi himself at one time had a share in the apartment, which his mother had privatized in the 90s, and he transferred this property to his mother and stepfather.
Since 2015, Tsyvinskyi began to work as a NABU detective in Kyiv, and he also explained all the stages of the relocation, in particular, the process of purchasing an apartment in a mortgage in Kyiv and the reasons for the family to live at this time in a rented apartment (in their own apartment at that time, they were conducting major repairs).
The commission was also interested in the remuneration that Tsyvinskyi received from the Renaissance Foundation. The candidate explained that he had conducted scientific activities and received funds for the implementation of practical research. His scientific activities concerned the improvement of the standards of pre-trial investigation, and it was within the framework of that work that he conducted trainings for prosecutors of the Prosecutor General’s Office, the SAPO, as well as for employees of the SBI and the NABU. For this, he received the specified remuneration.
The commission was also interested in the sphere of activity of his wife, who works as an individual entrepreneur. Tsyvinskyi explained that she was a forensic expert and a certified psychologist, was among the top experts on lie detector checks and generally engaged in investigations.
From 2003 to 2015, he worked in the internal affairs bodies in Lviv Oblast, so, the commission asked whether the candidate had faced corruption at these times. Tsyvinskyi replied that he had not personally witnessed such manifestations, but had known about their existence. In 2014, on the initiative of the head, it was Tsyvinskyi who checked the entire leadership on a polygraph. But this initiative ended with the fact that after the checks, Tsyvinskyi was finally sent on a business trip to the ATO, which he had unsuccessfully asked for some time. According to the candidate, after his return from the East, the initiative with such checks was curtailed.
Separately, the chair of the commission asked how Tsyvinskyi realized himself in the scientific sphere. The candidate said that at one time he had conducted seminars at the Lviv University of Internal Affairs, and at the moment he was writing a dissertation on the topic of taking possession of someone else’s property using the official position. However, he does not have enough time to work on his dissertation.
Head of the NABU Legal Department
One of the longest and, incidentally, the first interview, where one of the members of the commission, Kyrylo Lehkyi, announced the recusal due to a possible conflict of interest with the candidate. But the commission refused it, so, he continued his work.
As we saw from his conversation with the commission, Yarchak is a person with strong family ties and great property needs.
Thus, having started working in the Prosecutor’s Office of Lviv Oblast in 1999 and having reached a “serious” position in 2010, he had to support his family and wanted to move to the capital. For this, the prosecutor’s salary was not enough, according to the candidate, so he started working in the private sector (where there were dubious banks). But the main thing in this story is that a relative urged him to work in one of the positions. Yarchak did not disclose the details, but it sounded strange (google “nepotism”).
The committee also had a lot of property questions to him. For example, the matter of Lviv real estate, which the candidate’s family sold, bought, donated, took for a loan, and divided it among themselves. The history is really complicated and confusing because after selling one house, the family bought another one, and also took a loan. And then the crisis of 2008 began, so, the loan turned out an unbearable burden on the father, who paid it off by borrowing funds from relatives.
But the Yarchak family dreamt of owning a house, so, in 2020-2021, the candidate and his wife bought land plots for UAH 2.5 mln. These are the land plots that were questioned by the public because the purchase price exceeded the family’s income. Yarchak explained that they were bought with the savings.
Another interesting story concerned the illegal extension near the Lviv apartment of the mother. No, neither Yarchak nor his family did this, it was the neighbors who did it, damaging part of the mother’s apartment. They couldn’t reach an agreement, so, through the court, they decided that the extension would be demolished, and the “violators” registered the basement to her for compensation.
There were many questions about cars. Somehow it happened that Yarchak and his wife almost all the time used the car of the mother-in-law and father-in-law (Chevrolet Aveo — in 2015, Nissan Primera — in 2016, Ford C-Max — 2017), and only in 2018, they purchased Renault Megan at their own expense.
The commission also mentioned the disciplinary proceedings against Ihor Yarchak. He says that the reason was the peculiarities of the transaction with the beginning of the NABU law, while there was another judicial practice earlier on similar situations. Disciplinary proceedings are closed.
Lastly, something funny. In 2016, Yarchak allegedly used the russian social network Odnoklassniki. And not only to communicate with classmates, but also for games. Yarchak says that the sons were so fond of the “Farm” that they couldn’t stop, so, he gave the children access to the page. And the funny thing here is that Yarchak was allegedly noticed in his Odnoklassniki during his working hours, although it was his son who did it. After that, he deleted Odnoklassniki.
This publication was prepared with the financial support of the European Union. Its contents are the sole responsibility of Transparency International Ukraine and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.