Representatives of the Prosecutor General’s Office did not attend a meeting of the parliamentary committee to explain why the decision of the court on Yanukovych’s assets was classified a top secret. The Parliament explains it the same way.
On the air with the Hromadske Radio is Yaroslav Yurchyshyn, executive director of Transparency International. We are talking about a top secret decision of the Kramatorsk court on the confiscation of 1.5 billion UAH – assets of Yanukovych’s associates.
Dmytryi Tuzov: The decision of the Kamatorsky City Court on the confiscation of $ 1.5 billion belonged to the ousted President Viktor Yanukovych and his associates are not included into the Unified Register of Court Decisions. It is not included for security measures only. What do you know about this case?
Yaroslav Yurchyshyn: law enforcement agencies provide false information on security measures, at least, the head of the prosecutors group, Konstantyn Kulik, who headed the group on the recovery of assets, and was awarded the Order for this prosecution case, despite the fact that he is under investigation in part of court proceedings. He is accused by the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office in unjust enrichment and there is a significant amount of money to a person that can not be explained, so there is a suspicion that they are either corrupt or smuggled.
Anastasiia Bagalika: Was the Kramatorsk Court entitled to accept such a decision?
Yaroslav Yurchyshyn: we should take into account the arguments. But there are no such arguments and we cannot perceive it legal status. Now, we are thinking about a law suit against the Military Prosecution Office who classified this judgment as a state secret one. This is the only logical argument for us that is logical, but we hope we are mistaken, and the only explanation is that it is argumentative fallacy, and, in fact, there will be an appeal of this decision in the courts, if not Ukrainian, but the European Court of Human Rights.
Anastasiia Bagalika: activists are watching and when the confiscation of Yanukovych’s assets was announced, it became apparent that they might have to be recovered.
Yaroslav Yurchyshyn: There is always a possibility. The trial process is always a competition. If the accused party, the party against whom the charges were collected, will prove that the collection contradicts the national law or violate human rights, then these funds may be returned, and this is the usual practice.
It is important to defend at the current stage of matters within the national jurisdiction. If the way the evidence obtained violates the European conventions, and if some other means of reward were used or used in relation to a suspect who gave testimony such as a bribe, and the person who collaborates with the investigation would confirm this in the courtroom, Yanukovych’s sanction list would prove that the Ukrainian authorities do not act in accordance with the law, they manipulate, they pressure the witnesses, and they provides fake information about the persons involved in the case, so it can be considered as the “political will”.
That is the case, and the behavior can be explained by the total indifference to upcoming events: we can censure Ukraine’s prospect to recover the frozen assets, and there are hundreds of billions of dollars, that is, it’s actually multi-year budgets, just because they have not been perfectly improved. Probably we’re wrong. I would apt to believe that the true cause of secrecy is not to name the judge or witness.
Dmytryi Tuzov: Would it prevent Yanukovych to file a lawsuit with the European Court?
Yaroslav Yurchyshyn: Cypriot offshores have already filed lawsuits. Those offshore firms involved in the cash withdrawal have already filed complaints about the unlawfulness of the decisions.
Dmytryi Tuzov: Are there any signs that the list of these cases will be transferred to the profile parliamentary Committee on the Corruption Prevention?
Yaroslav Yurchyshyn: The Military Prosecutor’s Office and the General Prosecutor’s Office ignored the committee’s session showing their negative attitude towards the Parliament, and therefore it is not a surprise that the Regulatory Committee behaves the same way towards appeals of the General Prosecutor’s Office and, actually, ignores it.
It is a vivid example when authorities that have to cooperate ignore each other. But this is a two-way process: Yurii Vitaliyovych did not take any actions when Pavlo Pynzenyk behaved negatively against him at the committee meeting. In their turn, colleagues of Lutsenko also ignore the anti-corruption committee, so, for this reason, slow pace of investigation of the cases against corruption does not meet public expectations.
The Parliament does not react to limits put on its controlling functions. The Anti-Corruption Committee was not able to perform its control function, and the prosecutor’s office did not explain the secrecy of the case.
The parliamentary committee prepared an appeal regarding the legal case and asked to explain the reasons why it was classified as top secret. People’s deputies are ready to revolt and go to court, because de facto, the military prosecutor’s office seizes the control function assigned by law. The General Prosecutor’s Office, represented by the military prosecutor’s office, which handled the case, ignores the law.
Speakers were Anastasiia Bagalika, Dmytryi Tuzov. The text version was prepared by Kateryna Matsupa, Hromadske Radio