Prosecutor General of Ukraine Yuriy Lutsenko has described the move of his subordinate, Kostyantyn Kulyk, to announce suspicion notices to incumbent President Petro Poroshenko's entourage as "political campaign statements" that have nothing to do with legal procedure.
Speaking at a Jewish Forum in Kyiv on Monday, Lutsenko said: "If you want my assessment of the developments initiated by Prosecutor Kulyk, I consider them purely political campaign statements that have nothing to do with legal procedure. I have spoken with Mr. Kulyk on more than one occasion. My position is clear – if there is evidence sufficient to announce suspicion to any citizen of Ukraine within the framework of the PGO jurisdiction, it's the prosecutors' right and duty to do so. If there is no such evidence, then I regard such steps as illegal," an UNIAN correspondent reports.
According to Lutsenko, Prosecutor Kulyk violated, among other things, the "suspicion announcement protocol", and therefore these suspicion notices were later withdrawn from the Unified Registry.
"It [the protocol] was completely breached, and he will undergo a disciplinary probe by the Qualification Disciplinary Commission of Prosecutors," said the prosecutor general.
As UNIAN reported earlier, on March 28, Lutsenko said the Prosecutor General's Office (PGO) had completed an investigation into the wrongdoings of Ukrainian oligarch Serhiy Kurchenko.
Kurchenko is suspected of being part of ex-president Viktor Yanukovych's criminal organization and complicit in committing grave crimes against the State of Ukraine.
A total of 98 persons, including 12 senior officials of ministries and departments, as well as the National Bank, and six heads of regional state administrations and 14 senior managers of SOEs have been served with charge papers within the framework of investigations into the crimes of former President Viktor Yanukovych's allies.
On the same day, Deputy Head of the Ukrainian Prosecutor General's Office (PGO) Department of International Legal Cooperation, Head of the Criminal Procedural Management Department Kostiantyn Kulyk named among probe targets in the Kurchenko case, who had been announced suspicion, former head of the Presidential Administration Boris Lozhkin, former Governor of the National Bank of Ukraine Valeriya Gontareva, former Ecology Minister Mykola Zlochevskiy, Deputy Head of Presidential Administration Oleksiy Filatov, and other top officials.
The corresponding statement by Kulyk was handed over to 1+1 TV Channel's journalists and voiced on the air of a Pravo na Vladu panel show.
Later, the PGO said suspicion notices to Lozhkin, Gontareva, and Filatov had been called off.
On April 22, summons were published on the PGO website issued to Lozhkin, Filatov, and Gontareva obliging them to report to the PGO office on April 23 and April 25 to be handed suspicion notices in the case launched January 31, 2013.
The case investigates the creation by Viktor Yanukovych of a criminal organization and crimes committed in fuel, energy, banking, taxation, and other sectors. One of the episodes probed is embezzlement in procurement procedures for the so-called "Boyko drilling rigs" purchased for over US$400 million. Another episode covers shady schemes by a fugitive oligarch Serhiy Kurchenko.