The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) says that after a series of examinations and other investigative actions under the investigation into the creation of an illegal armed formation, new suspicions will be brought up.
"At the first stage of implementation, we presented six suspicions to the main persons involved, who actually headed certain areas of activity of this private military company. A number of investigations and expert studies have been assigned, according to the results of which there will be other suspicions," Head of the SBU Main Directorate in Kyiv and Kyiv region Oleh Holovash said at a briefing on Thursday.
Explaining what exactly former MP of Ukraine Semen Semenchenko and agent of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU) Yevhen Shevchenko are being accused of, the head of the main directorate said: "Semenchenko in 2018, along with Shevchenko and with the assistance of other persons whom we do not disclose today, organized and carried out the registration of a private military company on the territory of one of the foreign states," Holovash said.
He said the SBU blames Semenchenko "not the fact of the creation and registration of private military company on the territory of a foreign state, but the fact that he created on the territory of Ukraine since 2018, headed, provided equipment along with Shevchenko's illegal military formation."
According to the head of the SBU Main Directorate in Kyiv and Kyiv region "he was in fact the organizer, the head and directly drafted labour contracts and agreements, he was declared suspicious under Part 3 of Article 260 of the Criminal Code [the creation of paramilitary and armed formations]."
"Yevhen Shevchenko, who performed role participation, namely, ensured the search for channels of financing and supply of military ammunition, special equipment, technical equipment and ammunition, was notified of suspicion under Part 2 of Article 260. We additionally served Shevchenko's with charges under Part. 2 of article 133 of the Criminal Code (commission of a crime as part of a group) an hour ago," Holovash said.
He said: "We regard the fact of the creation of the private military company as a threat to commit a crime under the article of the Criminal Code 'mercenary' by persons who were part of illegal armed groups, including Semenchenko."
According to the head of the SBU Main Directorate, petitions for the selection of a preventive measure for the defendants in the case were sent to Pechersky District Court; decisions have not yet been made.
"There are many more episodes of illegal activity that we will document," he said.
At the same time, Holovash said the SBU has been checking the activities of public organizations and security structures since last summer. "We will continue to implement our existing developments. Only the government has the right to force," he said.
In turn, Head of the department of the Prosecutor General's Office Yan Streliuk, speaking about the validity of the suspicions presented, said: "I consider any insinuations and comments of those involved in this inappropriate."