Another prosecution witness testifies in Yury Lutsenko’s favour
The former Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs Oleksandr Fokin sees nothing untoward in the former Minister, Yury Lutsenko having issued an instruction for his driver, Leonid Prystuplyuk to be provided with housing. Mr Fokin was being questioned on Monday during the trial of Yury Lutsenko on charges of abuse of office, including with respect to his driver’s status and benefits.
Mr Fokin called organizing accommodation “a normal work situation”. There was nothing out of the ordinary about the instruction. “It was a verbal instruction which I was supposed to pass on and did to the Head of the Economic Department, Vasyl Sheludko”. He noted that Mr Lutsenko had not named the specific driver. “There was an instruction to choose housing and therefore there was nothing suprising for me at the time since we found housing for more serious individuals as well, including deputy ministers”, he said.
As well as serious grounds for concern over the charges and the fact that Yury Lutsenko has now been held in detention for almost a year, there have also been a number of occasions where witnesses have denied saying what the protocols allege they said. The presiding judge Serhiy Vovk has rejected applications to have the relevant investigators summoned for questioning over the discrepancies.
One of the alleged offences for which Lutsenko has been held in custody for 9 months is explained in the Legal Monitoring of the Danish Helsinki Committee on Human Rights. The driver in question is, of course, Leonid Prystuplyuk.
Articles 185.4, 191.5 and 365.3, excess of authority with grave consequences for in the period from 2005 to 2010 with the intention to inflict extra costs and losses to the State and in agreement with his driver to have facilitated the driver’s promotion to a series of police functions, respectively Operational Attorney, Police Captain and later Police Major and Minister Counselor, without the driver meeting the employment conditions or fulfilling these functions, and later to have prompted him awarded early enhanced pension, extension of pension seniority and assigned an official apartment which was reserved for other staff groups, by which he inflicted the state a total loss of approx. UAH 600, 000.