Prosecutor launches criminal investigation against Kharkiv police


The Kharkiv Regional Prosecutor’s Office has initiated a criminal investigation over professional negligence by police officers of the central department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (CD MIA) in the region who should have safeguarded public order during the political rally at 197 Klochkivska St in Kharkiv, during which the legality of the construction of a shopping centre was discussed.

The prosecutor’s office press centre cited the head of the administration of the prosecutor’s office Oleh Hoduyev that the organization of measures to protect public order during the crowd event in Kharkiv on 16 December had been inadequate. As a result of this, unidentified individuals out of hooliganism, flagrantly disrupting public order and demonstrating particular audacity, had inflicted bodily injuries on employees of a limited liability security firm “Tamira”.

The actions by the police to stop the aggression had been ineffective. The management of the Dzherzhynsky Police Department of the CD MIA in the Kharkiv region had not used the appropriate and timely actions to put a stop to the infringement of public order.

As a result of the police officers’ inadequate fulfilment of their professional duties, 22 people had received bodily injuries of various degrees of severity, and the firm “Tamira” had incurred losses of 124.5 UH.

According to Mr Hoduyev, the criminal investigation is under Article 367 § 1 of the Criminal Code (professional negligence). The pre-trial investigation into the case has been entrusted to the investigation unity of the regional prosecutor’s office, and the course of the investigation has been placed under the Prosecutor’s control.

As already reported, on 16 December, after a rally against the construction of a shopping centre at

197 Klochkivska St in Kharkiv, there were crowd disturbances with individuals being beaten up in the presence of the heads of the City Council and police units. On 18 December the management of the commercial group “Target” accused the Kharkiv City Mayor Mykhailo Dobkin and the Secretary of the City Council Gennady Kernes of provoking mass disturbances and the assaults of 16 December.

The head of “Target’s” department of legal and economic issues, Vladyslav Protas, the incident took place “with the total lack of intervention by the police” during a forced seizure of a disputed area of land allocated for construction at 197 Klochkivska St.  Protas stated that on Saturday, 16 December, during a rally against the supermarket’s construction, and in the presence of Mykhailo Dobkin and Gennady Kernes, “several hundred fighters” had carried out an attack on employees of “Target” during which local residents had also been hurt. He stressed that during the “peaceful rally” 21 employees of the firm “Target” had been injured, three seriously.

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