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• Topics / The right to a fair trial
Former Minister in Tymoshenko’s government has sentence reduced
The Kyiv Court of Appeal has reduced the sentence passed on Georgy Filipchuk, former Environment Minister in Yulia Tymoshenko’s government from a three-year term of imprisonment to a two-year suspended sentence. Mr Filipchuk’s lawyer, Mykola Shupen told Ukrainski Novyny that this was not a complete victory. They had asked for a total overturning of the conviction as there were no elements of a crime. Mr Shupen also confirmed that his client’s family had paid a 1, 443 million UAH fine. This was the amount of compensation ordered by the first instance court – the Solomensky District Court in Kyiv.
Georgy Filipchuk was convicted on 5 April this year of “abuse of power and official position” in concluding an agreement with a law firm over the dispute concerning Vanco International Ltd.
The Solomensky District Court in Kyiv with presiding Judge Volodymyr Melnyk found his client guilty under Article 365 § 3 of the Criminal Code.
Mr Filipchuk is supposed to have exceeded his power and official position over the contract with the law firm Astapov Lawyers which agreed to provide the Environment Ministry with consultation in examining the dispute in international legal institutes. The dispute was over the dissolution of a contract between the Ukrainian government and Vanco International Ltd on developing the Black Sea Shelf.
At the time Mr Filipchuk’s lawyer stressed that they had presented ample proof that Filipchuk’s actions had fallen within the framework of existing legislation and that he had carried out instructions from the Cabinet of Ministers, and former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko herself.
The criminal proceedings against Filipchuk were initiated on 13 December 2010. The Environment Ministry gave Vanco Prykerchenska a licence in December 2007 for a geological survey, experimental-industrial and industrial mining of oil, gas and gas condensate in the area around Kerch. Later the Ministry found a number of infringements of legislation during the tender and by Vanco itself. In April and May 2008 the government cancelled Vanco Prykerchensa’s licence.
Equal shares in Vanco Prykerchenska are held by Vanco International; DTEK Holdings Limited of the billionaire Party of the Regions MP Rinat Akhmetov and Shadowlights Investments Limited owned by the Russian businessman Yevgeny Novitsky, as well as by Integrum Technologies Limited.
Information about the appeal from Ukrainski Novyny Photo from Liga.net