The text of a ruling by Kramatorsk’s District Court on special confiscation of $1.5 billion from disgraced ex-President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych and his cronies has been classified because investigatory measures are underway and the safety of participants of the process should be provided, Deputy Chief of the Ukrainian Prosecutor General’s Office Yevhen Yenin has said.
“Our investigation has much more information at its disposal than that contained in the Al Jazeera article, so, as of today, in the interests of the investigation, we cannot say everything we know now,” Yenin said at a press briefing in Kyiv on Jan. 11. He added that most of the companies listed in the court ruling are still under investigation, including those registered outside of Ukraine.
“In this country it costs only several thousand dollars to assassinate a person. Imagine the risks faced by the witnesses in the case who are cooperating with investigators,” Yenin said, adding: “As for the court decision, we are convinced it is absolutely legal. I cannot now divulge all details, but I would say that it is not the only one that enabled us to confiscate the named assets. It was preceded by 30 verdicts involving other participants of the criminal group.”
As earlier reported, Al Jazeera on Jan. 10, published a 95-page text of Kramatorsk’s City Court ruling, dated March 28, 2017, which was later classified because it contained state secrets.
The court verdict is posted on the TV channel’s website both in Ukrainian and in English.
Al Jazeera argues that the verdict reveals the scheme through which public funds were embezzled under Yanukovych, and asks why the court verdict was classified.