Medvedchuk charged with high treason, aiding terrorist organizations, involvement in illegal coal supplies from ORDLO – Prosecutor General
MP of Ukraine from the Opposition Platform – For Life parliamentary faction Viktor Medvedchuk has been charged with high treason and aiding the activities of a terrorist organization due to his involvement in the illegal supply of coal to the occupied territory, Prosecutor General of Ukraine Iryna Venediktova said.
“Today we have informed about the suspicion of MP Viktor Medvedchuk of high treason and assistance to the activities of a terrorist organization,” Venediktova said at a conference on Friday.
Before a briefing on her Facebook page on Friday, the Prosecutor General, without giving the name of the MP, said that the investigators of the State Bureau of Investigations (SBI), together with the officers of the State Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), under the procedural guidance of the Prosecutor General’s Office (PGO), accurately established his involvement in the implementation of the criminal scheme for the supply of coal products from the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine. “The period covered by these acts is the end of 2014 to the beginning of 2015. The amounts spent by state-owned Ukrainian enterprises worth over UAH 200 million,” she said.
According to Venediktova, the MP “actively cooperated with the top leadership of our state as of 2014 and 2015, had the actual opportunity to negotiate and consult with the top officials of Ukraine, could not only convince them, but also persuade these people to make the decision necessary for him and, probably for them.”
“Thus, having received the green light from the highest state officials of Ukraine as of 2014 and 2015, the leadership of one of the ministries and a number of state-owned enterprises received an illegal order to conclude direct agreements with enterprises, the details of which were transferred by the leaders of the so-called LPR and DPR. On his plans, actions in the course of the implementation of a previously prepared plan, this deputy said, among other things, to the top leadership of Russia. By his actions, according to the investigation and prosecutors, this MP made Ukraine dependent on the LPR and DPR in matters of security of the Ukrainian energy system,” the prosecutor general said.
The MP’s actions are qualified by prosecutors as treason and assistance to the activities of terrorist organizations (Part 2 of Article 28, Part 1 of Article 111 and Part 2 of Article 28, Part 1 of Article 258-3 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine), Venediktova said.
The same information was confirmed by Head of the SBU Ivan Bakanov. “After Russia seized part of Donbas, Ukraine found itself on the brink of an energy crisis. Therefore, it was decided to buy coal on the world market, in particular, in South Africa. However, Russia had plans to disrupt the implementation of these contracts and prevent Ukraine from increasing its own energy independence. Therefore, with the mediation of Medvedchuk, a conspiracy took place with the top officials of Ukraine, who, using the powers of the National Bank and law enforcement agencies, created artificial obstacles to the supply of coal from South Africa. Then, those contracts were thwarted, which provoked a wave of ‘rolling’ blackouts in our country,” the SBU said in a statement on its website.
According to the SBU head, with the assistance of Medvedchuk, in order to return Ukraine to the orbit of influence of Russia, illegal schemes for the supply of coal from the temporarily occupied territories to state-owned enterprises of Ukraine were organized.
“This is a matter of high treason. How certain Ukrainian politicians and officials at the height of the war played on the side of Russia, neglected the interests of Ukraine and built joint ‘schemes’ with terrorists. These people should be punished deservedly and legally for that harm that they inflicted on the state. As their actions are undermining the energy independence of Ukraine,” Bakanov said at the briefing.
“In fact, the point is not in the scheme and the failure of contracts for the coal supply from South Africa. And not even in the suspicion that MP of Ukraine Mr. Medvedchuk received today. In fact, we are talking about boundless cynicism in terms of selling government interests and financing Russian terrorists,” he said.
Bakanov also said at a briefing the activities of Medvedchuk and other defendants contributed to the financing of terrorist organizations in ORDLO for almost UAH 3 billion.
According to Venediktova, “we have not yet say the names of the defendants.” They will be named at the next meeting with journalists, Bakanov said.
The SBU head and the prosecutor general released a number of audio recordings confirming the existence of the “coal scheme” and the interest of the Russian authorities therein. The expert examination confirmed that one of the persons involved in the recordings is Medvedchuk, who, in particular, communicates on the implementation of illegal schemes with representatives of the Russian authorities. During these conversations, the MP says he has guarantees from the highest officials of Ukraine.
In particular, through the mediation of a person close to Medvedchuk, businessman Serhiy Kuziara, two virtually non-working coal enterprises were selected in the occupied territory; LPR and DPR, they opened bank accounts and signed contracts with them for the coal supply. According to Bakanov, these issues were coordinated, including with the leaders of the servicemen. During the operation of this scheme, Russian-occupation fighters were financed in the amount of over UAH 200 million.
“The investigation has a serious file of evidence confirming the illegal activities of the defendants. We know about the transfer of cash to LPR and DPR and the transfer of funds to enterprises from the occupied territories. Moreover, we see that the plans discussed by the defendants [change of heads of enterprises, opening bank branches, etc.], were subsequently implemented,”the SBU head said.
Bakanov said the investigation continues, the issue of announcing suspicion to other persons is being worked out.
(c) Interfax Ukraine