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16.08.2011

Gongadze Lawyer: Where are the “State secrets” in the Pukach trial?

   

 

Valentina Telychenko, the lawyer representing Myroslava Gongadze, has asked for an expert option to be obtained indicating the presence of State secrets in the indictment against former Police Colonel, Oleksy Pukach.

“Before reading out the indictment and submissions which are stamped as secret, I would ask for an assessment by an expert on issues of State assessment who would indicate the fragments of the indictment and submission containing State secrets, in order for them to be excluded or removed to enable the victims’ side to read the rest of the text”, Ms Telychenko said on Monday.

She said that Georgy Gongadze’s widow does not believe it necessary to ask Ukraine for access to State secrets since she is permanently resident in the USA. She also “does not object if a part of the evidence in the case classified as secret, should be examined by the court in closed court hearings without her participation.”

She would, nevertheless, like to have the opportunity to read the indictment and Prosecutor’s submission regarding the termination of the criminal investigation against Yury Kravchenko [the former Minister of Internal Affairs who “committed suicide” with two bullet wounds to the head in early 2005 – translator].  This is because the formulation of the charges is defined there and the court cannot go beyond this.

The application also notes the practice of expert opinions of an indictment to ascertain whether there are any State secrets before it is read out, for example, with the cases against Protasov, Popovych and Kostenko [the former officers] who had a direct role in Gongadze’s murder.

The court is presently considering the application. Ms Telychenko said that she had spoken with Myroslava Gongadze who had agreed for the hearing on Monday to take place without her.  Ms Telychenko had previously asked that Ms Gongadze be able to take part in Monday’s hearing. 

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