Tryzub activists have charges reduced
According to their lawyer Volodymyr Prudovsky, the members of the nationalist organization Tryzub who are accused of damaging the bust to the dictator Joseph Stalin on land belonging to the Communist Party in Zaporizhya now face a reduced degree of criminal liability..
Originally they were charged with causing damage estimated at costing over 370 thousand UAH. With the change, the damages are now put at 100 thousand UAH.
This means that the maximum sentence they could face is 3 years imprisonment or a fine. Previously they could have faced up to 10 years imprisonment.
Mr Prudovsky said that the change shows that the representative of the Communist Party clearly understood that they had grossly overestimated the damage caused.
9 members of Tryzub have been charged with beheading the statue and were for a long time even held in SIZO [pre-trial detention centre]. Their cases are mentioned as examples of the repressive measures of the present regime causing grave concern in Ukraine and abroad (Appeal to the Leaders of Democratic Countries)
An application was lodged by the lawyer defending one of the Tryzub members. It was allowed by the Zhovtnevy District Court in Zaporizhya, Judge Viktor Tatarinov.
What is at issue is the cost of the damage with the amount presented by the communists in dispute. The Judge ordered that these figures be checked to see that they concur with the bookkeeping documents.
He also allowed the application to call as witnesses the Chief Accountant of the Communist Party, the Head of the Association for the Protection of Monuments in the Zaporizhya region, and others.
The nine young men had been charged with causing damage to property on a particularly large scale. The Communist Party has estimated the damage at over 350 thousand UAH (11 UAH = 1 euro)..