Criminal investigation against police involved in Trans-Dniester scandal
The Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union has learned from the Prosecutor General’s Office that the Prosecutor of the Frunzivsky District of the Odessa region (oblast) on 7 December initiated a criminal investigation against officers of the Frunzivsky District Police Station who are suspected of having exceeded their power and official duties.
As reported here, the investigation concerns the plight of three residents of the village of Samiylivka in the Odessa region who were forced by police officers across the State border between Ukraine and Trans-Dniester where they were unlawfully arrested by the Trans-Dniester authorities for a crime they did not commit. The three men remain in custody and are to be tried. In the meantime they are being subjected to beatings and ill-treatment in the SIZO [remand unit] of the Grygoriopolsk District Police Station in Trans-Dniester.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs has accepted that the law was broken by its officers who have faced disciplinary measures, and whose case has been passed to the Prosecutor’s Office.
The Frunzivsky Prosecutor’s Office had twice refused to initiate a criminal investigation. It is likely that the situation changed due to the presence at a roundtable, organized by UHHRU to discuss the case, of representative of the Prosecutor General’s Office, Mykola Shykyta, who promised to tell the management what had happened. The case is now under the Prosecutor General’s Office control.