Kyiv Appeal Court satisfied the claim of advocates A. Fedur and V. Ageev against former General Prosecutor S. Piskun and the newspaper “2000”


On 12 December 2003 the Appeal Court of Kyiv read out the resolution on the appeal of advocate Andrey Fedur against the court decision on the suit of Fedur against former General Prosecutor S. Piskun and the newspaper “2000”.

We want to remind that the case was instituted in the connection with the following events. In an interview to the newspaper “2000” (issue of 6 September 2002) General Prosecutor of Ukraine Sviatoslav Piskun, who is known as a very truthful man, answered a question about the grounds for the detention of A. Fedur in Lugansk. Piskun said: “He was driving a stolen car, which had been hijacked and was wanted by militia”.

Besides, Piskun told in the same interview: “It is known that judges more than once sent the appeals to the collegium of advocates about the deprivation of Fedur and his colleague Ageev of the licenses for advocate activities because of the disrespect for the court showed by them during the trial. Both advocates used to insult the judges. And, if the judges wanted to remove Fedur and Ageev from the trial, they could do it much earlier. Yet, the advocates were not deprived of the licenses, they only were summoned to the collegium twice and warned about the necessity to keep within the law”.

These statements by Piskun were absolutely mendacious. Fedur never drove a stolen car, and his Jeep was never hijacked or wanted by militia. Advocates Fedur and Ageev never committed the violations of advocate ethics or showed disrespect to court, they got no warnings from either the collegium of advocates or other advocate organizations.

Immediately after the publication of this interview Andrey Fedur turned to court. The advocate demanded the publication of the refutation by the General Prosecutor’s office and apologies.

The court attached the issue of the newspaper “2000” with the mentioned interview of Piskun to the materials of the case. By the way, another defendant, the newspaper “2000”, has already published the refutation of the information spread by S. Piskun.

However, Zhanna Bernatskaya, a notorious judge of the Pecherskiy district court, rejected the claim of A. Fedur, since, according to the court decision, THE CLAIMANT COULD NOT PROVE THAT THE DEFENDANT REALLY SPREAD THE ABOVE-MENTIONED INFORMATION.

So, the judge “did not notice” the facts that the newspaper was attached to the case materials as a proof, that a representative of the newspaper confirmed the fact of publication and that the newspaper even had time to publish the refutation of this information.

The Appeal Court agreed with the arguments adduced by A. Fedur in his appeal and acknowledged that judge Bernatskaya brutally violated the legislation. The Appeal Court resolved to pass the case to the court of the first instance for consideration by another composition of judges.

On 1 July 2003 advocate A. Fedur sent the appeal to the Supreme Rada, in which the advocate stated: the activities of judge Zhanna Bernadska evidenced that she was unworthy of being elected to judge’s post for term of life.

(Lawyers company “Ageev, Berezhnoy and partners”, )

(“Prava ludyny” (Ukrainian version), Kharkov, No. 34, 1-15 December 2003)

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