• Topics / The right to a fair trial
• Topics / The right to health care
Yury Lutsenko kept in custody despite his state of health
On Monday 20 September the Pechersky District Court in Kyiv refused to release former Minister of Foreign Affairs Yury Lutsenko from custody. The decision was read out by presiding Judge Serhiy Vovk.
Vovk stated that the court could change the restraint measure if new circumstances were presented. The court considers that statements to the effect that Lutsenko cannot influence the course of the case’s examination and obstruct the establishing of the truth are not facts.
As for the arguments regarding Lutsenko’s state of health, the judge stressed that responsibility for the health of people remanded in custody lies with the SIZO [detention centre] management. Examinations are carried out in the SIZO and medical care provided.
Yury Lutsenko’s wife, Irina, left the courtroom in tears. She plans to write another letter to President Yanukovych asking for her husband’s release.
Following the court’s rejection of the application to change the restraint measure, Lutsenko’s lawyer submitted another application – to issue a separate resolution with regard to the staff of the Ministries of Health and the Penitentiary Service regarding violation of Lutsenko’s right to healthcare.
The Prosecutor asserted that the court had not been presented with medical documents. This outraged Irina Lutsenko, as well as the former Minister himself, who reacted angrily, asking the Judge to “stop that liar” and saying that if he couldn’t tell the truth, he should sit down and shut up.
Before adjourning until Tuesday, the court issued a separate resolution with regard to the management of the Lukyanivsk SIZO at the request of Lutsenko’s lawyer:: they should be informed of Lutsenko’s complaint that he is receiving no treatment.
National Deputy from Our Ukraine – People’s Self-Defence, Yury Hrymchak asserts that the authorities are deliberately doing everything so that Yury Lutsenko will die in the SIZO and likens the case to that of Serhiy Magnitsky, the Russian lawyer who died in a SIZO in 2009.
At the same time, Oleh Zarubynsky, a National Deputy from the Lytvyn bloc (within the ruling majority) has said that there are several draft laws in the Verkhovna Rada which would decriminalize the articles of the Criminal Procedure Code which the politicians are charged under.