The Pechersk District Court in Kyiv has ruled to drop charges off ex-deputies of the Verkhovna Rada regarding their adoption of "dictatorial laws" in 2014, which significantly restricted people's rights to peaceful protests.
The court decision of December 8 says Judge Vita Bortnitska ruled to grant the petition of defense team representing ex-chairman of the Party of Regions faction Oleksandr Yefremov, former MPs Serhiy Hordienko (Communist Party), and Oleksandr Stoyan (Party of Regions).
In particular, the judge has ruled to exempt said persons from criminal liability and dismiss the case.
As UNIAN reported earlier, on January 16, 2014, the Verkhovna Rada of the VII convocation adopted the so-called "dictatorial laws" aimed at preventing the holding of peaceful protests, for which fewer deputies actually voted than it was necessary for the bill to pass Parliament.
The Prosecutor General's Office initiated a case under Art. 364 ("abuse of power or official position") and Art. 366 ("forgery") of the Criminal Code.
In 2015, charges were pressed against former president Viktor Yanukovych, first deputy chairman of the Verkhovna Rada Ihor Kaletnik, chairman of the Party of Regions faction Yefremov, chairman of the Counting Commission Volodymyr Oleynyk, and 11 deputies of the VII convocation.
Regarding Yefremov, Hordienko and Stoyan, the indictments was forwarded to court.
Eight suspects have been hiding from the investigation and put on the wanted list.
In August 2019, Deputy Prosecutor General Serhiy Kiz closed criminal proceedings against Kaletnik.
Yefremov has been indicted in a treason case, also involving charges of other crimes against committed the state. That case was heard by Starobelsk District Court. On July 8 this year, the Supreme Court, at the request of Yefremov’s defense, ruled that the trial continue in Kyiv. On September 18, the Starobelsk District Court overturned the earlier ruling to keep Yefremov under 24/7 house arrest.