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Court ACQUITS Roman Landik: he attacked a young woman ’in self-defence’

21.04.15 | Halya Coynash

Four years after Ukraine was rocked by video images of Party of the Regions deputy Roman Landik beating up a young woman in a restaurant, a Luhansk court has decided that Landik was ‘defending himself’ and totally acquitted him. 

Roman Landik is the young, privileged son of former Party of the Regions MP Volodymyr Landik and at the time of the incident in early July 2011 was himself a recently elected Luhansk City Council deputy.

Cases where the sons of deputies, prosecutor’s and others in high places escape criminal liability in Ukraine are legion, but this one case was different (or so, at least, it seemed).  Video footage hit the Internet clearly showing Landik  making advances to a young woman, being rejected, obviously angered and attacking her. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wf6948LT_VI

The outcry was so great that even Landik’s father and others in the Party of the Regions began making stern noises and promising that Landik would be prosecuted. 

He was detained in Russia where he fled following the publicity and was eventually extradited to Ukraine.  While officially in detention in Luhansk he was observed walking around the street by Luhansk human rights activist Kostyantin Reutsky,

There were clearly behind the scenes efforts to reach agreement with the victim, and when on Jan 19, 2012, a Luhansk court handed down a three year suspended sentence (with a two year probation period) and released Landik, the victim herself reportedly said she was satisfied.

Landik was not and his lawyers lodged first an appeal, then a cassation appeal against the conviction.  These were rejected and the sentence upheld.

Until Feb 4 this year.  Landik applied to a totally different court in the city of Sviatove, claiming that the case needed to be reconsidered due to ‘new circumstances’. 

On that occasion, Judge S.O. Yurchenko agreed that Landik had used “necessary self-defence” and acquitted him. 

It is over two months later and it is only thanks to the now reinstated Single Register of court cases and somebody’s vigilance in following them that this has come to light.  The victim, Mariya Korshunova, for example, has said that she only learned of the court case on April 20. 

Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin stated on Monday that he would look into this acquittal.   A similar response was seen at the end of September 2014 following publicity over the extremely early release of former MP Viktor Lozinsky who is serving a long sentence for murder. 

It is seriously worrying how many other cases are not picked up. 

see also:
Journalists come out in force in support of TVi and LB.ua
Criminal proceedings against another independent media publication
Chief Editor of LB.ua leaves Ukraine over threat of criminal proceedings
New twist in the Landyk scandal with pressure on critical website
Landik gets suspended sentence and is released
Landik Trial: Doctor asserts that MP’s son suffered more than his victim
Trial begins of Roman Landik
Roman Landik and his victim reach an “agreement”
Unlike members of the opposition Roman Landik at liberty to wander
Roman Landik extradited to Ukraine to face charges
Russian “extradition check” regarding Landik
Prosecutor General seeks Landik’s extradition from Russia
Civic activists demand real liability for Deputy’s son Landik
Prosecutor’s son accused of causing the death of three pedestrians released on bail