In Zaporizhia, a journalist is detained as a propagandist for Donetsk People’s Republic
As reported by the SBU, this detainee (according to TIMER, it is a local journalist Pavel Volkov)worked during 2014-2016 in the Committee for Social Communications of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic, “where he prepared various illegal materials for the separatists’ Internet resources.” Thus, according to the intelligence service, the man “called for a change in the territorial integrity and inviolability of the Ukrainian borders” and “provoked incitement of ethnic hatred.” At the same time, the SBU emphasizes that the “agitator” received “assignments” and coordinated his work with “curators” from the Russian Federation who financed these websites.
According to SBU he was tasked to return to Zaporizhie to organize an information campaign ordered by the Kremlin against Ukraine. The propagandist, in particular, planned to gather people for protests for money to organize of “fake” protest actions.
SBU reported that they detained the man immediately after his return to his native city and found computer equipment (decorated with St. George ribbons) during the search of his home, as well as information carriers with “evidence of preparation and distribution of anti-Ukrainian materials and participation in an illegal referendum.” In addition, they found a “resume” for employment in pro-Russian networks.
The former mayor of the city of Slavyansk, Donetsk region, Nelya Shtepa, was released from the detention facility where she had been kept on suspicion of separatism and terrorism since 2014.
This was reported on Facebook by Ukrainian politician and ex-deputy of Verkhovna Rada Elena Bondarenko. According to her, the suspect is now under house arrest.
As TIMER wrote earlier, in the beginning of September Shtepa’s lawyer Alexander Tananakin announced that his client was beaten in a Kharkov detention center by one of the officers of the penitentiary institution. He also published a letter addressed to the Minister of Justice Pavel Petrenko in this regard. In addition, according to Shtepa, she was placed in the chamber blackened from dampness, with mice and cockroaches.
Shtepa was detained in July 2014 – she was declared a suspect in committing crimes under Part 2 of Art. 110 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (encroachment on the territorial integrity and inviolability of the state) and Part 1 of Art. 258-3 (creation of a terrorist group or organization).
Having conducted several searches of telecommunication providers, the SBU started investigation of treason
The Security Service of Ukraine declares that they have identified a number of Ukrainian telecommunications providers that provided illegal Internet services to the so-called Donetsk and Luhansk People Republics, Crimea and the unrecognized Transnistria.
During the searches of the providers’ premises in Kiev & Kiev region, Dnieper, Odessa and Kharkov, law enforcement officers seized computer equipment and documentary materials confirming illegal activities.
SBU opened criminal cases of treason and formation of a terrorist group.
Ukraine: Woman Detained, Held Incommunicado, Tortured
Ukraine’s Security Service (SBU) arbitrarily detained a Ukrainian woman, held her incommunicado, and tortured her, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities charged the woman, Daria Mastikasheva, with treason, and a court in Dnipro has ordered her pretrial detention pending investigation.
Mastikasheva, 29, a Ukrainian citizen living in Moscow, was visiting her mother and her 10-year-old son in the town of Kamenskoye, in the Dnipropetrovsk region in eastern Ukraine. On August 15, 2017, the security services abducted her and held her incommunicado for two days.
“Ukrainian authorities should immediately investigate the allegations that Mastikasheva was unlawfully detained and tortured,” said Hugh Williamson, Europe and Central Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “Ukraine has a record of torture and other ill-treatment in custody compounded by virtual impunity for such abuse.”
After being abducted, detained and tortured by SBU officers, the woman was given a text to memorize for the camera, which said that she was an agent of Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB), and had travelled to Ukraine to recruit veterans of the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine to commit terrorist attacks in Russia, which the FSB would blame on the Ukrainian government. The head of the SBU later showed this video at the news conference on August 17.
The lawyer said that the SBU also detained a man, Aleksandr Korotai, accusing him of helping Mastikasheva recruit Ukrainian war veterans for the FSB. The lawyer said that Korotai was also tortured and forced to give a false confession.
Source: Human Rights Watch
18 people detained in Kharkov, including a 83 years old man
On September 3, the head of the SBU, Gritsak, boasted of a successful special operation conducted by his subordinates. In an interview with Yevgeny Kiselev on the television channel “Direct” he said:
“On August 17, in Kharkov, we detained a large group of Russian intelligence agents, which consisted of 18 people. Seven of them have already been presented with charges, we have conducted 16 searches … They carried out sabotage and reconnaissance activities on our territory.”
Among those detained is Mehti Logunov, a 83-year-old Soviet engineer, candidate of technical sciences, whom SBU officials suspect of the creation of a sabotage and reconnaissance group. Surprisingly, this operation was carried out on the eve of an attempt to pass a law by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine to recognize Russia as an aggressor.
There are reports that these detentions were carried out with gross violations of legal procedures and law, and Mehdi is under severe pressure from the SBU, where he is forced to admit his guilt. Logunov is isolated from his daughter, who, incidentally, was also arrested, but subsequently released with the prohibition to leave the country.
As one of the former political prisoners (2014-2016), Spartak Golovachev, wrote on the social media, “Logunov is maximally isolated and subjected to a psychological pressure and, I am afraid, physical as well. They are trying to get from him a confession as soon as possible.”
Former deputy of the Verkhovna Rada (2006-2007) Ivan Bondarchuk is accused of cooperation with the newspaper Moskovsky Komsomolets [Moscow Komsomol Member].
In May of this year, a 73-year-old politician was detained for organizing pro-Russian actions. At the time, the media wrote that it was a question of state treason and officially presented the corresponding charge, however, as TIMER found out, such information was not confirmed: no charge has been yet presented. Bondarchuk was arrested after the action “Immortal Regiment.” [a parade organized in celebration of the Victory Day on May 9].
Bondarchuk is accused of having conspired with a representative of the newspaper “Moskovsky Komsomolets” and agreed to hold rallies as well as to block state institutions and roads for money. After that, he supposedly had to transfer photos and video materials to Russian journalists (according to the SBU, the ex-MP in April received $ 25,000 from an intermediary for doing this), but law enforcement officers have not yet found evidence of Bondarchuk’s actions against Ukraine.
SBU exposed several administrators of anti-Ukrainian communities in social networks
Law enforcment agents identified and detained pro-Russian propagandists in Kyiv, Lviv, Cherkassy, Khmelnitsky, Kharkiv, Chernihiv, Ivano-Frankivsk, Dnipropetrovsk and Sumy regions.
[excerpt] The separatist administrator from Khmelnitsk region, according to the instructions of the coordinators in Russia, disseminated materials through publicly controlled resources with public appeals to change the boundaries of the territory and state borders of Ukraine, the unconstitutional elimination of the current government, justified the aggression of the Russian Federation and the criminal actions of the terrorist groups of the Luhansk and Donetsk People’s Republic. In one of the groups he posted photos of the dead and wounded ATO [anti-terrorist operation in Donbass] members with cynical comments.
In total, in the period of 2014-2017, the Security Service of Ukraine registered seventy-two criminal proceedings, according to the materials of pre-trial investigations of the Security Investigation Council of Ukraine, more than sixty verdicts were handed out to persons who carried out anti-Ukrainian propaganda on Russian social networks VKontakte and Odnoklassniki.
An Open Letter by a Former Political Prisoner in Odessa, Elena Glischinskaya, in response to an ongoing scandal around the conditions in Odessa jails: inspections by the Prosecutor General’s Office and visits of human rights defenders in the pre-trial detention center are a mockery
REFERENCE. Elena Glischinskaya was held in detention in the case of the so-called “People’s Council of Bessarabia” [accusations in separatism] (she was in jail from the end of April 2015 until June 2016 and even gave birth to a child while in detention). However, she never received her verdict: Ukrainian President Poroshenko decided to exchange her and another detainee, Odessan journalist Vitaly Didenko, also accused of separatism, for two Ukrainian citizens, convicted in the Russian Federation.
Almost a week has passed since the terrible murder [in the pre-trial detention center in Odessa], and this incident has turned into a media campaing, no matter how cynical and cruel it may sound. There have been loud statements, press tours, including, damn it, even human rights defenders. I have every right to assert that all these inspections of the Prosecutor General’s Office and visits of human rights organizations are only carried out to divert the attention of and to calm the public; this is a mockery. […]
In fact, right now there are terrible things happening that no one wants to see. Punitive searches and beatings of prisoners – “yes, there have been talks about this, but there has been no confirmation, prisoners did not complain about this to the commission and journalists” [a citation from a news report]. When I read these comments and articles, I am surprised at naivety and selective blindness.
I ask you, to begin with, to read the chronicle of events, which is led by Alexander Orlov. Everything there is true – from beginning to end. Alexander gives only the information that he managed to “snatch” from behind the barbed wire. Without emotions, without personal evaluation. Of course, no one complains, most of prisoners are convicts with previous experience, they take all the written and unwritten rules and live by them. Those who complain and keep resisting simply have their mouths shut. Alexander Orlov himself, a journalist and human rights activist, is one of those people whom they were not able to break down during the five years of the investigation of his case (which, by the way, did not find any evidence of his guilt).
So, during such inspections and commissions, during visits by journalists, people like I and Alexander, and others who are “way too smart” – we are simply put either in a punishment cell or in an isolated cell – waiting room. For the whole day, without food and water. An isolated cell is even worse than the punishment cell: it is a stone bag with a narrow dirty crossbar for sitting. Often the process of such displacement of prisoners was accompanied by beatings and threats from the staff of the detention center. I was not beaten, but men were – I still can hear their cries for help in my ears. The commissions and visitors were presented with “obedient” prisoners from the system – that’s all.
Representatives of the Ombudsman of Human Rights never visited me, even given my difficult [health] situation [she became pregnant during the detention period] and the political nature of the state persecution, or maybe precisely for that reason. But I witnessed how they treated other “complainers” – with disdain, superiority and even disgust.
[…] Sometimes, before an inspection from Kiev, there were also actions of intimidation that did not consist in punitive searches – special forces in masks and body armor would come into the building – then one could be punished merely for looking out the little window in the cell door.
I want to remind everyone that people in jail are not criminals, but those who are still under investigation, whose guilt is not yet proven. They are there, because they had no money for a bail or a bribe for the judge. During the year that I was there, dozens of them were released without charge – the investigation was wrong. But before that, they had to live in this hell for several years. Many cannot take it any longer and sign a confession in exchange for a suspended sentence or for milder conditions of imprisonment. […]
A criminal case was initiated against a deputy of Mykolayiv’s regional council for keeping bas-reliefs of Lenin in his house
Mykolayiv’s political scientist Fedor Levchenko wrote about this on his Facebook page: “The police started a criminal investigation into the case of the deputy of the Mykolayiv regional council Petro Kovalchuk, for the placement of bas-reliefs of Lenin in his own house in the village of Sebino. This became known from the sources in the police, “- wrote Levchenko.
Spouse of the ex-security chief of the Russian oligarch Berezovsky was detained by the SBU on the accusations of treason
Reportedly, the woman, who is a Ukrainian citizen but currently residing in Russia, came to the Dnipropetrovsk region to visit her relatives, but was detained by local intelligence agencies on suspicion of treason. Her husband Sergey Sokolov believes that this is a revenge for his investigations against the Ukrainian authorities. For example, Sokolov pointed to the possible involvement of Kiev in the crash of the Malaysian “Boeing” in 2014.
SBU detained a retiree from Dnipropetrovsk who was distributing leaflets with St. George’s ribbon on them
As reported in the local patrol police, an elderly man was distributing in one of the supermarkets leaflets depicting St. George’s ribbon, a symbol forbidden in Ukraine. The SBU forces also participated in the detention.
In Uzhgorod, a local resident received a prison sentence for having called for a violent change of power in Ukraine.
As reported in the Unified State Register of Judicial Decisions, he appealed to a small number of people on his Facebook account to seize state power by violent means, reacting to a protest near the Transcarpathian Regional State Administration in February 2017.
These appeals, according to the prosecution, were found in the following statements:
“Will they give us weapons or should we have ours?” [that is, at the protest];
“You understand that it is not worthwhile to go there without weapons, so simply standing and picketing is not going to help, these bastards have already adapted to the rallies, and they continue to breed like the Colorado beetles. Guys, it is necessary to go with arms and bring down these scumbags, because everyone has his own hut on the edge. Maybe I’m wrong? “;
“And the police – the police and the SBU and the National Guard are already ready to disperse and beat up people. I am telling you this, as a person who understands the tactics of Avakovism ” [Avakov is the current Minister of Internal Affairs];
“If you want order, then you have to take all the weapons in your hands and bring down the whole gang, if not, what’s the use of these appeals.”
The court sentenced him to 3 years in prison with a probation period of 1 year.
Residents of Severodonetsk, Luhansk region were warned about the upcoming searches and advised not to leave their houses without an urgent need
The Security Service of Ukraine reminds that in the near future it will hold preventive measures in the city of Severodonetsk to counter “terrorist and sabotage threats”. This was reported by Tatyana Pogukay, police spokeswoman for the Lugansk region, on her Facebook page.
Pogukaj also urged residents to immediately report informations on the involvement of unknown persons in the intelligence service of the republics or in separatist units.
Two residents of Slavyansk received five years in jail for publications in the Russian social network Vkontakte.
The men were arrested in April 2015, and have since been held in jail. They were accused of separatism (Part 2, Article 110 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine) for certain appeals in Internet. According to the investigation, they administered a number of groups, in which, in particular, they urged to proclaim Odessa a free city, “to join the Russian Federation in any unclear situation”, to join the militia and so on. The court concluded that these communications also contained “indirect calls to take control of the settlements where the referendum on the independence of the People’s Republic of Donetsk was held,” etc.
In January 2017, the court found both men guilty and sentenced them to five years in custody.
The men appealed, but the Court of Appeal of the Donetsk region found that they had been convicted correctly. At the same time, the court rejected as unproved their allegations of having been subjected to physical force during the investigation.
The Security Service officers searched the building of the Zaporozhye City Hall for possible links with the People’s Republic of Donetsk.
Where this information come from is a mystery, but the Mayor of Zaporozhye Vladimir Buryak is sure that this is connected with an attempt to destabilize the work of the mayoralty, which does everything for its people and does not steal from the local budget. The mayor did not name who exactly is interested in this. He also stressed that all the accusations against the staff of the mayor’s office are absurd. As stated in the decision of the investigative judge of Zhovtnevy district, the pre-trial investigation found that in the office of the mayor of Zaporizhzhya and his deputies, there was equipment installed for the transfer of information to the territory of the Donetsk region.
The Security Service of Ukraine began a new case to frame up the editor-in-chief of the online news outlet Strana.ua, Igor Guzhva.
This was reported to Facebook by Guzhva himself, who reminds that he wrote about these plans by SBU already in mid-July.
“On July 13, I wrote a post that the case of extortion, in which I was framed up by the SBU, was not holding up, and therefore the authorities decided to try to fabricate another case against me.” For this reason, they won a permission to transfer all the office equipment seized during the search [of the editorial office] to the SBU. The formal reason for this was some violation of secret state information, found on a flash drive “Kingston,” allegedly taken away from us (by the way, in the search protocol, the withdrawal of such a flash drive does not appear),” writes Guzhva. Now Guzhva’s information about the attempts by SBU to framing him up in a new case has been confirmed. SBU found a classified information of the Ministry of Defense on a flash drive, allegedly seized during the previous search in the office of Strana.ua. This is stated in the ruling of the court from July 27, as reported by “Ukrainian News.” Guzhva himself, as well as his lawyers, notes that in the protocol of the search in the editorial office of Strana.ua, the confiscation of such a flash drive is not recorded.
Employees of the Security Service of Ukraine appeared with a search in the office of the SkyNet Internet provider in the district center Izmail in the Odessa region: the provider helped to bypass the blocking of social networks.
According to eyewitnesses, the office of the company that was searched is currently sealed. In addition, security officers seized the SkyNet server.
Security Service of Ukraine detained a resident of one of the regional centers of the Cherkassy region who posted anti-Ukrainian materials on social networks “VKontakte” and “Odnoklassniki.”
As the press service of the special forces reports, the man posted information on his own pages in social networks that discredits the Ukrainian authorities and the forces of the anti-terrorist operation, propagated the ideas of the “Russian world” and supported activities of the LDPR [Luhansk & Donetsk People’s Republics].
The foregoing served as a reason for opening criminal proceedings under Part 2 of Art. 109 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine – “Public calls for the violent change or overthrow of the constitutional order or for the seizure of state power, as well as the dissemination of materials with calls for such actions.”
Commentary. A typical method of official propaganda is to declare any criticism of actions by the authorities, Bandera formations, as well as of official publications as “anti-Ukrainian activities”. Behind all such formulations, there are repressions against anti-fascist, leftist and anti-Bandera publicists, who in fact are fighting for an independent, democratic and modern Ukraine.
The office of Yandex in Odessa is being searched. On May 29, employees of the Security Service of Ukraine blocked the office of Yandex.Ukraine in the business center “Morskoy”.
Law enforcement officers ordered all employees to change their mobile phones and move to one room while law enforcers inspected the rest. In addition, employees were required to provide administrative passwords and similar information to law enforcement officials.
Fight against illegal TV channels: the Security Service searches a shops network in Kharkov
As a publication 057Ua reports referencing eyewitnesses and its own sources in law enforcement agencies, employees of the Eldorado shops network installed certain software on TVs, with the help of which it was possible to watch banned Russian channels in Ukraine.
10 administrators of pro-Russian public pages in social networks will pay with their freedom
“Law enforcement officers exposed coordinators of separatist resources in Kiev, Kherson and Kharkiv regions. Administrators, acting on instructions of curators from Russian special services, posted information online calling for the overthrow of the constitutional system, changing the borders of the territory of Ukraine, and campaigning for the assistance of the terrorist organizations “DNP / LNR.” During the searches at the place of residence of malefactors, the Security Service of Ukraine found computer equipment with evidence of anti-Ukrainian activities in Russian social networks VKontakte and Odnoklassniki, “the report said.
Commentary: Neither Ukrainian state agencies, nor international organizations and institutions RECOGNIZED self-proclaimed DNP / LNR as terrorist organizations. Ukrainian security authorities mislead public without embarrassment, providing grounds for arrest that are not legally valid. Unprecedented legal nihilism, unwillingness to follow the spirit and letter of the Law is a distinctive feature of modern Ukrainian law enforcement agencies.
An administrator of a pro-Russian group in a social network in Kherson region may be imprisoned. Law enforcement agencies established that a resident of the region registered an account under an assumed name in a social network and regularly posted materials that “discredit the Ukrainian authorities and the military” as well as called for a change of the state borders of Ukraine.
During the search of the woman’s house, the employees of the special services found computer equipment with some evidence of anti-Ukrainian activities in the social network “VKontakte”.
A 73-year-old deputy chairman of the Union of Leftist Forces, Ivan Bondarchuk, was arrested in Ukrainian city Vinnitsa on suspicion of high treason. As reported on the Facebook page of the leader of the political movement Vasily Volga, Bondarchuk organized a march of the “Immortal Regiment” on May 9.
Commentary: “Immortal Regiment” – an action that takes place in the former USSR countries and in many countries around the world. On May 9, millions of people go out on street marches, holding in their hands portraits of their grandfathers, who fought and won in the Second World War. This action arouses hatred from the side of Ukrainian nationalists and an irritated reaction of the Ukrainian authorities. The leadership of Ukraine stated that the “Immortal Regiment” is an action organized in the interests of Russia and that it will not be held in Ukraine any more. The arrest of Bondarchuk, along with other incidents of repression and intimidation- a clear signal to activists involved in the organization of the Immortal Regiment.
The Halytsky District Court of the city of Lviv sentenced a 22-year-old Komsomol member to two and a half years in prison – according to the materials of the criminal case and the verdict – for laying flowers at the grave of Soviet soldiers on May 9. The fact that the member of the Komsomol of Ukraine posted on his Facebook page a “criminal” slogan calling, in the court’s opinion, to terrorist actions: “Lenin lived. Lenin is alive. Lenin will live” served as an aggravating circumstance. Among the material evidence is the volume of Karl Marx’s Capital. There are two more Komsomol members in this case, one of whom is only 15 (!) years old.
According to the prosecutor’s office, the 22-year-old student, committed a criminal offense under article 436-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (producing, dissemination of communist, Nazi symbols and propaganda of communist and national-socialist (Nazi) totalitarian regimes). According to the verdict, which is posted on the website of the Single State Register of Judicial Decisions, on May 4, 2017, the Galitsky District Court of Lviv presided over by Judge Strelbitsky, with the participation of the prosecutor Matlakh, recognized a native of Lviv, a third-year student of Lviv National University as guilty of committing a crime under part 1 of article 436-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.
According to the storyline of this case, from May 2015 till April 2016, the student made publications from his home – using his own portable laptop, with a Facebook account under a pseudonym – that were recognized by the linguistic expertise as propaganda of elements of communist ideology, that is, deliberate spreading of tendentious information aimed at idealizing and popularizing communist ideology as well as public use of products with symbols of the communist regime. The student did it realizing that his page was open to public and could be accessed by an unlimited number of users of the social network Facebook. Publications included among others statements dedicated to Lenin, a person who held a leading position in the highest authorities in the USSR, his philosophical and political quotations, as well as generally known Communist slogans. The publications are not published openly in the verdict. However, according to sources of the online publication Strana.ua in the prosecutor’s office, the quotations published by the student are the following: “Lenin lived, Lenin is alive, Lenin will live,” “The plan is the law, fulfillment is duty, overfulfilment is honor!” and the like. Under the terms of the agreement, the accused, during the pre-trial investigation, fully acknowledged his guilt for the crimes envisaged in part 1 of article 436-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, and he pledged to admit it unconditionally in the whole amount of the charges in the judicial proceedings. The parties to the agreement immediately agreed on the punishment in the form of two years and six months of imprisonment without confiscation of property with exemption from serving the sentence under the condition of a probation period of one year.
A public activist from Genichesk, Kherson region, was imprisoned for five years for having organized an anti-mobilization [to the army] rally. The man was sentenced to 5 years in prison.
A judge read the verdict, in which the leader of the party “SPAS,” Eduard Kovalenko, was found guilty of committing a criminal offense under art. 114-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine “Obstruction of the lawful activity of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and other military formations”.
Kovalenko is accused of opposing already in 2014 the war in Donbass and trying to prevent sending of troops to the so-called “ATO” zone.
Journalist Ruslan Kotsaba was convicted of a similar article previously, but then the verdict was canceled in the appellate court.
Police detained men who traveled around Odessa with a Victory Banner
Two citizens were transported to the police station for driving around Odessa in a car with a Soviet flag installed on it – a symbol of the victory of the Soviet people and of its Armed Forces over fascist Germany in the Great Patriotic War.
A pensioner in a T-shirt with the inscription “USSR” was detained on the Alley of Glory in Odessa
As of 11:00 on May 9, two citizens were delivered to police departments: a retiree born in 1938, dressed in a T-shirt with the inscription “USSR”, and a man born in 1987, who distributed forbidden printed products on the Alley of Glory.
Early in the morning on May 9, the Victory Day, the Security Service of Ukraine once again raided with searches activists of the movement “Kulikovo Field”.
There are reports of searches of Maurice Ibrahim, Nina Kochanovskaya and other people, known for their sympathies for the movement. In addition, the latter, after a short search of her house, was taken by the special forces to the office for interrogation.
We remind that members of the Security Service of Ukraine searched activists of the “Kulikovo Field” movement also on May 2, including Ibrahim: then the law enforcers decided that he could still keep evidence at home in connection to the events of May 2 three years later.
A motorist, who attached a flag with the image of the Order of the Great Patriotic War, was detained and placed in a temporary detention facility.
The discovery of a vehicle whose driver “distributes communist symbols” in the area of the Zastava market was reported to the police by vigilant citizens. Arriving at the scene, the police actually found there a car with a flag on which was depicted the Order of the Great Patriotic War, containing, in turn, images of the red star, sickle and hammer banned in Ukraine.
SBU detained five administrators of pro-Russian groups in social networks
Five owners and administrators of anti-Ukrainian communities in social networks were detained in April by the Security Service of Ukraine in various regions of the country.
“On the orders of their curators from the Russian special services, residents of the Kyiv, Mykolayiv, Dnepropetrovsk and Lviv regions distributed on the eve of the May holidays calls for the radicalization of public actions on the occasion of May 1, 2, 8 and 9, and also tried to use social networks to initiate riots,” – The report said.
On 2 May, two opposition deputies of the Odessa Regional Council were summoned for questioning. Employees of the Investigation Department of the Main Directorate of the National Police in the Odessa region handed in summons for interrogation to the deputies of the regional council Sautenkov and Baransky (“Opposition block”). This was reported by one of the people’s deputies, Vitaly Sautenkov, who wrote on his Facebook that the police came to them on May 2 at 8:00 am “with the active participation of the radicals from ” Right Sector “.”
“I and my colleague Viktor Baransky received a summons with a request to appear for questioning. This once again proves that today the government cooperates with the radicals! We were taken to the office – apparently for the whole day, so that we could not pay tribute to the victims of May 2, “noted Sautenkov.
In his opinion, the authorities try to intimidate the opposition with such actions. “The date chosen for this, on May 2, is more than indicative. May 2, 2014 is a dark date in the history of the city, which divided its life into “before” and “after”. It’s been three years already, and the perpetrators have not yet been punished. All that is happening now, proves only the following: the current government is not interested in a fair investigation into the mass death of people in Odessa, “the Odessan deputy states.
On May 2, police officers searched the house of an activist of Kulikovo Field Maurice Ibrahim (Odessa): law enforcerment agents decided that he could still – three years later- keep evidence at home in connection to the events of May 2, 2014.
Earlier, a search of journalist of the opposition Internet publication from Odessa TIMER Nadezhda Melnichenko took place in connection to criminal proceedings in a case of separatism, allegedly opened as early as 2013.
A resident of the Odessa region faces 10 years in prison for selling flags of the Ukrainian SSR. Employees of the Security Service, the police and one of the “patriotic” organizations in the Ovidiopol district arrested a man suspected of spreading flags with communist symbols of the USSR and the Ukrainian SSR.
The fact that the man is selling flags banned in Ukraine, was discovered by activists of the public organization “Public Security Police”. They immediately reported the fact to the police and SBU officers.
The Security Service of Ukraine arrested a resident of Lviv and a resident of Rivne who had in social networks following pages: “Antimaydan Lviv”, “Lviv People’s Republic” and “Rivne People’s Republic”.
According to the press service of the SBU, “they posted on the Internet materials that discredited the Ukrainian state and the army, propagated the idea of federalization of Ukraine imposed from Russia.”
Both residents of Western Ukraine were detained. A criminal case was opened under art. 110 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (separatism).
On April 10 and 11, the SBU conducted a series of searches of residents of Odessa, who at various times took part in the events of the Kulikovo Field.
Among other things, intelligence officers are interested in activities of assistance to the activists of Kulikovo field who are in jail for political charges. After the searches, searched individuals were taken to the Security Service for interrogation.
According to available information, none of them was detained, no notices of suspicion of committing crimes were not filed. At the same time, the suspects themselves suspect that the real goal of the SBU is to intimidate activists on the eve of the next anniversary of May 2. According to unconfirmed information, searches will continue until the end of the week.
We remind that on April 10, SBU came with a search also to an employee of TIMER Nadezhda Melnichenko. In the course of the search, SBU officials seized computer equipment and technology for saving information, including those containing confidential data concerning her professional activities.
The SBU, they opened a case on Bessarabian separatism that began in 2013. This criminal proceeding is based on plans of a certain group of individuals to create the Bessarabian People’s Republic on the territory of the Odessa region. Within the framework of the proceedings, on April 10, 2017, the Security Service officers searched the house of the TIMER employee Nadezhda Melnichenko.
On April 10, Melnichenko was delivered to the Security Service for interrogation as a witness after a many-hour search.
Employees of the special services assure that Nadezhda Melnichenko may be involved in the activities of the organization allegedly planning to create the Bessarabian People’s Republic in the Odessa region.
The SBU claims that on April 10, the group members planned to arrange provocations in Odessa aimed at destabilizing the socio-political situation, and that the TIMER journalist allegedly could have had propaganda products, including those with Communist symbols that are banned in Ukraine. It was in the search for this insignia that the «Chekists» came to Melnychenko around 7:00 am on April 10.
Commentary: Odessan journalist Yelena Romanova (Glischinskaya) was jailed in the case of the Bessarabian People’s Republic for more than two years; she gave birth to a child in prison and spent more than a year with an ill newborn son in intolerable prison conditions. The case of the People’s Council of Bessarabia is one of the vivid examples of «fakes» created by Ukrainian law enforcerment agencies to create a plausible excuse to carry out reprisals over dissenters.
On March 22, members of the Security Service of Ukraine came with a search to a political scientist from Chernivtsi Oleg Khavich.
This is reported in social networks by his friends and relatives. What he is being suspected of is not yet clear. We remind that on March 20, Oleg Havich tried to hold a round table of national minorities in Chernivtsi. However, local activists of “EuroMaidan” thwarted the event and beat its organizer. The police did not intervene in the beating, and after the activists had finished, they arrested Khavich and were sent to the district department. A few hours later he was released.
Oleg Khavich himself claimed that the police not only did not interfere in the actions of the activists, but also directed them.
The Security Service of Ukraine on February 23 conducted a search and seizure of documents in the Zhytomyr regional council, whose deputies are suspected of striving for a “covert federalization.”
Earlier the Security Service has already reported that deputies of the regional council allegedly planned to discuss at their sessions certain issues that, in the opinion of the special services, could promote the ideas of Ukraine’s transition to the federal structure of the country, create free economic zones, introduce direct elections of governors, grant a special status to the Russian language etc.
Odessians celebrated the Day of Defender of the Fatherland, despite provocations by radicals
Meanwhile, during the action, the police patrol officers detained a woman, apparently, for wearing a St. George ribbon.
Employees of the Security Service of Ukraine conducted a search at the residence of a priest of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC) in Rovno, who organized an All-Ukrainian religious procession in the summer of 2016.
This was reported in Facebook by the head of the legal department of the UOC Alexander Bakhov. “Well, has it begun? SBU conducted a search in the house of a priest of the Rivne Diocese, thanks to whose efforts, the All-Ukrainian procession took place on the route from Pochaev to Kiev, despite provocations and threats. I thought back then: “He will not be forgiven for this!” He also defended and prevented a number of captures of the churches of the UOC in Rivne region, “the church spokesman said.
As reported by TIMER, the provocateurs from the radical organizations foiled the departure of the parishioners of the Odessa diocese of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church scheduled for the evening of July 26, 2016 for the All-Ukrainian procession for peace in the country.
Report of Kushnarev’s case
Alexander Kushnaryov, 65 years old, deputy of the Limansk District Council (an elected office in the local government). He is a businessman, an owner of the center for psychological assistance “Gracia” that specializes in helping those who want to lose weight .
His son, Gennady Kushnaryov, died at the age of 37 on May 2, 2014 in the House of Trade Unions, while defending civilians from being lynched by radical nationalists. According to the official version, Gennady died of poisoning with carbon monoxide. An analysis of this version raises doubts that are reflected in publications on the Internet. After his death, Gennady’s wife gave birth to their daughter.
On the Internet, there were also published pictures of Alexei Goncharenko, People’s Deputy of Ukraine, bent over Gennady Kushnaryov’s body in the House of Trade Unions. According to witnesses, Goncharenko searched Kushnaryov’s corps looking for “Russian traces” – documents, contact details, etc. – and treated the body of the diseased in a disrespectful manner.
Alexei Goncharenko is a type of politician-opportunist. Under the government of Yanukovych, he was a very active member of the Party of Regions and advocated for the Russian language to become the second official language of Ukraine .
However, when the new President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko came to power, Goncharenko became an activist of the “Petro Poroshenko’s Bloc” (BPP). It was Goncharenko who announced the victory of the “patriotic” forces on May 2 2014 on the air of the main political talk show of the country, doing this in a big emotional upsurge .
On February 23 2017 the Ukrainian media announced Goncharenko’s disappearance .
On the same day, in Odessa, a press conference was held by the prosecutor Zhuchenko. In the course of the press-conference, it became known that Goncharenko’s disappearance was part of a special operation of the SBU. According to the prosecutor, there was an order for Goncharenko’s kidnapping. Alexander Kushnarev, the father of the deceased Gennady Kushnarev, and Anatoly Slobodyanik, 68 years, the head of the Odessa Organization of Veterans of Armed Forces, were named as the individuals who ordered the abduction .
They were also accused of publishing literature that fosters incitement of ethnic hatred. Both accused were arrested and placed in custody.
In subsequent court hearings, it became known that an experienced provocateur, named Pavel Serebryanik, participated in the “special operation” of the SBU. He is a former policeman, had several convictions and was the initiator of a number of resonant court cases concerning charges of corruption of various officials. Almost all these cases ended in acquittal .
Even the media outlets that are loyal to the Ukrainian authorities note that this operation was a provocation. A typical quote: “… MP Alexei Goncharenko declared that he had known in advance about the planned abduction. He stated that the operation for his kidnapping had been in preparation for several weeks, but the SBU officers “had been leading” the individuals who had ordered the kidnapping.
The law enforcement agency spread disinformation. First, the operatives detained Kushnaryov’s accomplices and, having contacted on their behalf the organizer himself, they invited him to take part in the reprisal against the politician who had been allegedly captured. Publications in the media were supposed to lull Kushnaryov’s vigilance.” 
Later, the following details became known: “During the session [of the court on March 15, 2017], the parties to the process discussed the protocols of covert investigative actions that were attached to the case materials: these are audio and video recordings made by the witness Pavel Serebrenik, who appears in the materials of the case under the pseudonym “Zhukov.” In particular, the lawyer of the suspect pointed out to the judges that “Zhukov,” aka Serebrenik, actually instigated Slobodyanik and the second suspect, the father of Gennady Kushnaryov who died on May 2, 2014, to commit crimes. So, it was Zhukov who ordered the production of printed materials, which, according to the investigation, incite interethnic discord (this is also a part of the accusations against Kushnaryov and Slobodyanik), he repeatedly urged Kushnaryov to take revenge on the people’s deputy Goncharenko for the mockery of the corpse of Kushnaryov’s son in the House of Trade Unions. “Zhukov”-Serebrenik carefully recorded all of this on the video that today constitutes the main evidentiary basis of the prosecution.” 
As for the literature that was ordered by the accused, the prosecutor’s office demonstrated two books. One of them, titled “Odessa Bells of Khatyn,” is dedicated to the memory of the victims of May 2. The book was published as early as 2014 by the means of relatives and friends of the victims. It contains biographies of those who died in the House of Trade Unions, as well as poems dedicated to the tragedy of May 2. The second book is devoted entirely to the problems of Ukrainian nationalism. 
All these circumstances raised doubts about the reality of the accusations. Authors of many commentaries on the case, who represent various points on the political spectrum of Ukraine, also note the fact that the personal rating of People’s Deputy Goncharenko has been falling rapidly, which happened before and always led to activation of PR companies by this active man 
It remains to add that both Kushnarev and Slobodyanik are elderly people, whose health has been undermined. Both repeatedly suffered heart attacks. The media has published data on the health status of Slobodyanik, who is in a serious condition at the moment. Despite this, both the court of first instance and the Court of Appeal refused to change the measure of restraint for the accused and to release the veterans under house arrest. 
February 2, 2016
Odessa is the center of Novorossia, and Russian should be the second state language, said People’s Deputy Goncharenko.
Deputy head of the faction “Bloc of Petro Poroshenko”, People’s Deputy Alexei Goncharenko, told in an interview with “Ukrayinska Pravda” 4 years ago that the Russian language should become the second official language, since Ukraine as a country is “rather artificially sewn up.”
Such statements he made in 2011 in an interview with a well-known Ukrainian journalist Sergei Leshchenko who now positions himself as a “Ukrainian nationalist” and carries money to Moscow for organization of Maidan.
We should note that it was the ex-mayor of Odessa Alexei Kostusev, father of Goncharenko, who started to implement “russification” in Odessa. In his turn, his son advocated in 2011 that the residents of Odessa should choose themselves in what language their children are to be educated.
“I think that it is absolutely correct that the program for development of the Russian language is accepted today in Odessa. It is often said: “Russification is taking place…”. In Odessa, 90% of people are Russian-speaking, but only 30% of children in general education schools are taught in Russian. It is necessary to introduce a simple practice – to allow parents to determine in which language they want their children to study,” – noted Alexey Goncharenko.
In addition, the ex-member of the Party of Regions is confident that this education program in Odessa will serve to destroy the Ukrainian language as a state language; Goncharenko said that Odessa was not a Ukrainian city and was created as the center of Novorossia.
“Odessa was not a Ukrainian city. Odessa was created as the center of Novorossia where there were Russians, Greeks, Ukrainians, Jews, Bulgarians and others. The Russian language has always been in Odessa, it is not brought there by migrants,” – noted Alexei Goncharenko.
In addition, the deputy noted that the southern part of Ukraine is Novorossia that has its own culture and history, while Ukraine itself is “rather artificially sewn together.”
“Ukraine is artificially sewn together. It is because Novorossia, the southern part, was attached to the central Ukraine that had a completely different culture and history,” – noted Alexei Goncharenko.
Let us emphasize that People’s Deputy Goncharenko, who under the current government is hanging around Ukrainian flags in the occupied territories, believed 4 years ago that making Russian into the second state language would lead to a more peaceful life in Ukraine.
“I believe that today, at the regional level, everything possible has already been done in regards to the Russian language. As to the level of the country, my point of view is that the Russian language should be the second state language. I think that sooner or later it will happen. I would like the Party of Regions to do this. Moreover, I assure you that we will see that as a consequence life in Ukraine will calm down,” – noted Alexey Goncharenko.
Let’s recall that on March 1, news feeds of Ukrainian media became full of reports about Goncharenko’s detention by Russian law enforcement officers – allegedly for wearing a T-shirt with Nemtsov’s portrait and words in Ukrainian “Heroes do not die.”
February 23, 2017
Media reported Goncharenko’s abduction
A number of Odessa media outlets reported the kidnapping of the People’s Deputy of Alexei Goncharenko, making references to sources in law enforcement agencies.
This information was confirmed by the prosecutor’s office of the Odessa region. The police promised to comment on it later. Details have not yet been reported.
Goncharenko’s colleague in the faction of BPP, Alexander Briginets, wrote on his Facebook page that in the evening of February 22, Goncharenko rushed from Kiev to Odessa to some important meeting, after which he disappeared and was not answering calls. “The prosecutor’s office, which has more information, confirms that the most likely version of events is a kidnapping … I am sure that this is a political crime, and I believe that our security forces will not allow the irreparable to happen. Alexei, we are very worried about you! ” writes the People’s Deputy.
Another People’s Deputy from the BPP Olga Chervakova, referencing the Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko, said that Goncharenko was kidnapped by separatists who planned to torture him.
However, according to TIMER’s sources in law enforcement agencies, nothing terrible happened to Goncharenko and his kidnapping was staged.
February 23, 2017
The missing Goncharenko appeared on TV and said that he had participated in a special operation.
Head of the Odessa Regional Administration of Petro Poroshenko Bloc, MP Alexey Goncharenko said his “disappearance” had to do with his participation in a special operation of the SBU.
The Deputy made this statement on air on the broadcast channel EspresoTV.
“I participated in a special operation conducted by the Ukrainian security forces in order to neutralize a terrorist group that had been planning a series of crimes, including my abduction and infliction of grievous bodily harm to my person” – said Goncharenko, adding that the whole operation had lasted several months.
“It was documented in accordance with appropriate court sanctions. The apogee of the operation was supposed to take place today. It is no coincidence that it was planned for February 23 – a date sacred to them (criminals – Ed.),” said the People’s Deputy.
He admitted, moreover, that his abduction, which was reported by the media on February 23, “was staged,” and said that he had left for Odessa the night before specifically for the purpose of the operation. .
It should be reminded that the prosecutor of the Odessa region, Oleg Zhutschenko, told reporters that the kidnappers wanted to torture Goncharenko, for which reason they had prepared acid, hammer and other handy materials. The person who ordered the kidnapping, according to Zhutschenko, is Alexander Kushnaryov – the father of one of the victims of May 2, activist Gennady Kushnaryov. “Together with his two accomplices, he was supposed to go to an indicated to him place to cause bodily harm to the People’s Deputy Goncharenko, namely by using acid to damage his face and by breaking his kneecaps. This person has a motive. He was both the person who ordered the abduction and who was supposed to carry it out, “- said the prosecutor.
He said that Kushnaryov and his accomplices were not able to carry out the kidnapping themselves and that’s why had to find someone to execute it. Law enforcement officers played this role and it were they who organized the staged kidnapping.
February 23, 2017
Goncharenko: “My abduction is a special operation, I am feeling well.“
People’s Deputy Aleksey Goncharenko told the Ukrainian Pravda about details of a special operation that consisted in staging his abduction. According to Goncharenko, law enforcers warned him in advance that a separatist group was preparing to kidnap him. “It was a special operation. This morning my abduction was staged. This special operation has been carried out for many weeks by now in connection with a separatist, terrorist group that operates in Odessa and that had planned to cause me grievous bodily harm,” said Goncharenko. People’s Deputy explained that this was the reason why he went from Kiev to Odessa late at night in order to appear in Odessa in the morning, so that people knew that he was in town. Goncharenko said that in the morning he had been “kidnapped” by employees of the SBU, after which they sent an appropriate message to the people who “ordered” the kidnapping that the “object, item has been stolen, you can proceed to the next part of the plan – punishment. And those who were supposed to carry out the punishment went to a place assigned to them by the ‘kidnappers’.” (Goncharenko cited). “Then the people who ordered and organized the kidnapping went directly to the place where they were supposed to punish me. Acid was later confiscated from them, that is, means of torture.” – Said the MP. “I was no longer there. There were only employees of SBU and the Prosecutor’s Office in the assigned place, there they (the organizers – editor) were arrested. Searches still continue, there are other places as well.” – Goncharenko said. He said he did not know who is being searched.
The special operation was conducted by SBU under the supervision of the prosecutor’s office of Odessa region.
Goncharenko noted that he knew the name of one of the organizers. “It is Alexander Kushnaryov. I don’t know him personally. He is a People’s Deputy from the Opposition Bloc of the Limansky District Council. His son, Gennady Kushnaryov, was one of the participants of the Antimaydan and died in the House of Trade Unions on May 2, 2014. Personally, he had interest in revenge ..” said Goncharenko. He noted that this was already the third time that he was threatened with kidnapping or murder. “The first attempt was made in 2015 when “Odessa People’s Republic “was preparing my murder. During several months, the security forces would tell me what to do. Now these people are in court. Several of them have received sentences and those who had to carry out the murder are still in court, “ said Goncharenko. The first time, he said, was in 2014, when two people received an order to kill him.
Information about the disappearance of the deputy head of the parliamentary faction “Block of Petro Poroshenko,” the people’s deputy Alexei Goncharenko, appeared on Thursday.
February 23, 2017
Goncharenko’s kidnapping was planned by the father of an activist of Kulikovo Pole, who died on May 2, – declared the prosecutor’s office
Goncharenko himself is in a safe place at the moment and is preparing to testify. This was announced during a briefing on February 23 by the prosecutor of the Odessa region Oleg Zhutschenko. According to him, the kidnappers intended to torture Goncharenko, to which purpose they prepared acid, hammer and other improvised materials. According to Zhutschenko, the person who ordered the kidnapping is Alexander Kushnaryov, the father of one of the victims of May 2, an activist Gennady Kushnaryov. “Together with his two accomplices, he was supposed to go to an indicated to him place to cause bodily harm to the People’s Deputy Goncharenko, namely by using acid to damage his face, by breaking his kneecaps. This person [Kushnaryov] has a motive. He was both the person who ordered the abduction and who was supposed to carry it out, “- said the prosecutor. He noted that Kushnaryov and his accomplices were not able to carry out the kidnapping themselves and that’s why they had to find someone to execute it. Law enforcement officers played this role and it were they who organized the staged kidnapping. According to Zhutschenko, members of the group who planned to torture Goncharenko were also involved in the production and distribution of materials aimed at inciting hatred towards Ukrainian nationalists. During the arrest of the group, several hundred copies of such materials were allegedly seized.
Law enforcement officers were able to preempt the kidnappers. Currently Alexey Goncharenko is in safety.
February 25, 2017
In the case of Goncharenko’s abduction, the investigation needed a more experienced provocateur.
One of the key witnesses in the case of a ‘fake” abduction of Goncharenko is Pavel Serebryanik who has been notoriously called a professional provocateur. This information was confirmed for TIMER by several independent sources. Pavel Serebryanik is notorious in Odessa as an actor in several sensational criminal cases involving corruption charges. Thus, based on his testimony, following people were detained in the past: deputy head of the city administration of MVD Dmitry Tsvetkov, vice-mayor of Odessa Nikolay Ilchenko, director of KP (municipal enterprise) Poberezhie Oleg Kuchtey, head of the Kievsky District Administration Vladimir Sushkov and many others. These cases followed a common scenario: Serebryanik would report to the law enforcement authorities that above-mentioned individuals were allegedly extorting from him a bribe, a fact, which he, as an honest citizen, had to report to the law enforcement agencies. Afterwards an arrest and long court proceedings would follow, ending in most cases with acquittal of the accused. Moreover, Serebryanik himself has an uneasy relationship with the law: he was twice convicted of fraud (in 1995 and 2002) and once for extortion (in 1998). According to the information available to TIMER, it is exactly Serebryanik’s testimony that serves as the basis for charges against People’s Deputy of the Lymansky District Council Alexander Kushnaryov who allegedly organized a “fake” abduction of Goncharenko. Allegedly Kushnaryov wanted to take revenge on Goncharenko for the death of his son, Gennady Kushnaryov: Goncharenko became famous because of a photo with the corpse of the latter in the background. According to rumors, Goncharenko did not disdain searching pockets of the dead looking for a Russian passport.
February 23, 2017
Attempt to kidnap Goncharenko: a video appeared with a conversation between the organizer of the kidnapping and his accomplices
On the Internet, a video recording appeared containing a conversation between accomplices of Deputy of the “Opposition block” and businessman Alexander Kushnaryov who was detained in connection to the attempted kidnapping of People’s Deputy Alexei Goncharenko. The video was given to the publication “Duma” by sources in the SBU and published on YouTube. “Everything will be fine. No one has died yet from what I am going do to him, he will be blind and lame, that’s all,” says Kushnarev in the video.
As the Apostrophe reported earlier, MP Alexei Goncharenko declared that he had known in advance about the planned abduction. He stated that the operation for his kidnapping had been in preparation for several weeks, but the SBU officers “had been leading” the individuals who had ordered the kidnapping.
The law enforcement agency spread disinformation. First, the operatives detained Kushnaryov’s accomplices and, having contacted on their behalf the organizer himself, they invited him to take part in the reprisal against the politician who had been allegedly captured. Publications in the media were supposed to lull Kushnaryov’s vigilance.
March 15, 2017
The accused in the case of Goncharenko’s fake kidnapping will remain in detention
On March 15, the Court of Appeals of the Odessa region refused to review the decision of the Primorsky Court of Odessa in regards to the detention of Anatoly Slobodyanik, a suspect in organization of the attempted kidnapping of the People’s Deputy Alexei Goncharenko. The suspect himself was absent from the meeting due to poor health: his blood pressure jumped to 160/100 on the morning of March 15. However, according to the prosecutor, Slobodyanik’s state of health, who has already suffered two heart attacks, is not lifethreatening and can not be a ground for choosing for him a softer measure of restraint.
During the session, the parties to the process discussed the protocols of covert investigative actions that were attached to the case materials: these are audio and video recordings made by the witness Pavel Serebrenik, who appears in the materials of the case under the pseudonym “Zhukov.” In particular, the lawyer of the suspect pointed out to the judges that “Zhukov,” aka Serebrenik, actually instigated Slobodyanik and the second suspect, the father of Gennady Kushnaryov who died on May 2, 2014, to commit crimes. So, it was Zhukov who ordered the production of printed materials, which, according to the investigation, incite interethnic discord (this is also a part of the accusations against Kushnaryov and Slobodyanik), he repeatedly urged Kushnaryov to take revenge on the people’s deputy Goncharenko for the mockery of the corpse of Kushnaryov’s son in the House of Trade Unions. “Zhukov”-Serebrenik carefully recorded all of this on the video that today constitutes the main evidentiary basis of the prosecution.
In their turn, representatives of the prosecution insisted that Slobodyanik should be kept in custody. They substantiated their demands with the fact that Slobodyanik has relatives in Russia and in Crimea where he could escape. Another argument was the fact that it is not safe to leave Slobodyanik and Kushnaryov at liberty because they can commit other unlawful acts: in particular, the materials of the case contain references to the fact that Slobodyanik and Kushnaryov had planned to print some leaflets for the next anniversary of the tragedy of May 2, 2014, which they, of course, can not do while in jail. After listening to both sides, the court sided with the prosecution and decided to uphold the decision taken by the Primorsky Court to keep Slobodyanik in detention for two months.
On March 20, the same court will consider an appeal against the decision of Primorsky Court to detain the second suspect, Alexander Kushnaryov.
We should recall that Slobodyanik and Kushnaryov have been accused in planning to kidnap the People’s Deputy Alexei Goncharenko on February 23 of this year. According to the investigation, Slobodyanik and Kushnaryov planned to torture Goncharenko and make him disabled. In addition, Slobodyanik and Kushnaryov are suspected of publishing anti-Ukrainian literature.
February 23, 2017
The prosecution revealed “anti-Ukrainian propaganda” by “Goncharenko’s kidnappers”
The Prosecutor’s Office of the Odessa region published photos of literature of anti-Ukrainian content that was allegedly published by members of the group suspected in preparation of the kidnapping of Alexei Goncharenko.
The message from the Prosecutor’s Office states that this literature is “directed at propaganda of national discord between Ukrainians, Russians and Jews,” which has already been confirmed by the expertise. However, nothing in the published photos shows an anti-Ukrainian or anti-semitic character of the literature that has been seized. Among others, the photo shows the book titled “Odessan Bells of Khatyn,” dedicated to the memory of the victims of May 2. The book was published already in 2014 by the means of relatives and friends of the victims. The second book is dedicated to the problems of Ukrainian nationalism. We should recall that publishers of the literature are also accused in attempted kidnapping of the People’s Deputy Alexei Goncharenko on February 23, 2014. One of them -the father of Gennady Kushnaryov, who died on May 2, 2014 – has been already arrested.
February 24, 2017
“Opposition block”: Alexander Kushnaryov’s arrest is a planned political provocation
The arrest of Alexander Kushnaryov, suspected of organizing a fake kidnapping of the People’s Deputy Goncharenko, is another act of repression by the authorities against the “Opposition bloc” in the Odessa region. This is stated in a statement distributed by the press service of the political faction.
“The staging of the abduction of the former defender and preacher of the “Russian World” in Odessa, and now one of the leaders of the presidential party Alexei Goncharenko, and the accusation against our fellow party member Alexander Kushnaryov, who on May 2, 2014, lost his son Gennady, in a result of the monstrous tragedy, is a planned political provocation,” says the statement of the opposition bloc.
“We are sure of Alexander Kushnaryov’s innocence. We are confident in the desire of the authorities and the desire of their henchmen to demoralize us and our supporters, by using any dirty or mean methods to this purpose. The arrest of Kushnaryov is a theater of the absurd, where the main role of the clown was poorly played by Alexey Goncharenko,” claims the party.
“Opposition block” promises not to abandon their fellow party member in times of trouble and are sure that this new challenge will make the impact of the political party in the region only greater.
February 23, 2017
Diplomat: even dramas in Goncharenko’s life raise by Ukrainians only laughter
Ukrainian diplomat and former consul general in Istanbul Bogdan Yaryomenko said that Ukrainians do not take seriously the information about the abduction of Odessan People’s Deputy Alexei Goncharenko. Yaryomenko made this statement made in an interview with the publication “Gordon”. In his opinion, in Goncharenko’s case “even the tragedy turns into a comedy.” “With his short but bright biography, this person managed to achieved such an attitude towards him that even dramatic events in his life cause laughter. There has been so much idiocy around Goncharenko that no one takes seriously the news of his kidnapping,” commented the diplomat to law enforcement officials about the disappearance of the deputy. As Yaryomenko suggested, hoping to be constantly in the center of attention of Ukrainian society, the People’s Deputy has achieved as a result a “comic effect,” and now he should draw conclusions from the reaction of society to the reports of his abduction. “It is clear that the police should react to the possible kidnapping of Goncharenko very seriously, they are not up to jokes. I hope everything will end well for him. But public opinion has already been formed,” the diplomat added.
February 23, 2017
Media reported Goncharenko’s abduction
A number of Odessa media outlets reported the kidnapping of the People’s Deputy of Alexei Goncharenko, making references to sources in law enforcement agencies.
Goncharenko’s colleague in the faction of BPP, Alexander Briginets, wrote on his Facebook page that in the evening of February 22, Goncharenko rushed from Kiev to Odessa to some important meeting, after which he disappeared and was not answering calls. “The prosecutor’s office, which has more information, confirms that the most likely version is a kidnapping … I am sure that this is a political crime, and I believe that our security forces will not allow the irreparable to happen. Alexei, we are very worried about you! ” writes the People’s Deputy. Another People’s Deputy from the BPP Olga Chervakova, referencing the Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko, said that Goncharenko was kidnapped by separatists who had planned to torture him. However, according to TIMER’s sources in law enforcement agencies, nothing terrible happened to Goncharenko and his kidnapping was staged.
March 3, 2017
“Goncharenko’s kidnapping:” hearings of the appeal of the accused are postponed for a week
Court hearings, scheduled for March 3, on appeals of the suspects in kidnapping of People’s Deputy Alexander Goncharenko, Kushnaryov and Slobodjanik, were postponed. The reason for this lies in the fact that Kushnaryov and Slobodjanik had expressed desire to be present at the court hearing for consideration of their complaints, but they were not brought to court. The defense of Slobodjanik asked the court to cancel the decision made by the investigating judge of the Primorsky court of Odessa, Ivanov: the judge chose detention as a pre-trial form of restraint. The defense also asked to chose a new preventive measure in the form of personal responsibility. Also in the appeal, the defense indicates that the suspect wants to attend the hearing of appeal to give clarification on this point to the court. The prosecutor remarked that the hearing should be moved due to this application by Slobodjanik. The judges had a quick word on the site, and decided to open the hearing nevertheless. According to the defense, all charges against Slobodjanik are based on witness testimony given by a certain Mikhail Semenovich Zhukov who is actually a former member of the Odessa City Council, Pavel Serebryanik. In addition, as the lawyer said, the risks mentioned by the prosecutor’s office, have no basis. According to the prosecutor, it is impossible to mitigate Slobodjanik’s preventive measure, since during the search of Slobodjanik a Russian passport was found on his person and confiscated. Moreover, the brother of the suspect resides in the territory of Crimea, which “may indicate that Slobodjanik can flee there to avoid the investigation.” In addition, the prosecution believes, if freed, Slobodjanik can damage or destroy evidence, including the one that has not yet been collected, since the investigations continue. He also may influence witnesses. In this case the prosecutor stressed that the identity of the “witness Zhukov”, aka Pavel Serebrenik, was disclosed, after which the latter has begun to receive threats (Serebrenik has already asked for protective measures for himself). Slobodjanik’s lawyer, in his turn, began to insist on the need to present concrete facts that would confirm involvement of his client in the alleged crime, and, at a minimum, to provide Zhukov’s testimony (information about the testimony is available, but there is no testimony itself). The prosecutor responded that certain investigative actions have not yet been legalized. After hearing the parties, the judge retired to the deliberation room and after a brief absence made a decision to postpone the hearing for a week. We also add that, according to the lawyer, Slobodjanik had suffered two heart attacks, and in jail his condition may deteriorate considerably. The defense also notes that at the hearing during which detention was chosen as a pre-trial measure of restraint, Slobodjanik experienced a heart attack, which is why he could not fully convey to the court his position.
March 6, 2017
“Abduction of Goncharenko”: a 68-year-old suspect is near death in jail
A suspect in the kidnapping of People’s Deputy of Odessa Alexey Goncharenko, the retired colonel Anatoly Slobodjanik, is near death.
This was reported on March 5 by the ex-deputy of the Odessa City Council Igor Dimitriev, who received this information from his sources. According to these sources, Slobodjanik is currently in the sixth, “political”, part of the Odessa prison. “Today his left side of the body got paralyzed, a doctor quickly arrived, made a shot, and they were able to avoid a heart attack. They say he will not last long, and it is not clear, why he was not given a house arrest – for the 68-year-old general it would be the third heart attack, and it is unlikely that he will survive it, “- wrote Dimitriev on his Facebook page. He reminded that the Chairman of the Odessa Regional Union of Veterans of Security Forces, Anatoly Slobodjanik, was arrested along with Alexander Kushnaryov (his son was killed in the House of Trade Unions ) a week ago as a result of a special operation of the SBU. “Kushnaryov was placed in a cell with criminal offenders, but the relationship between them, it is said, is normal. Slobodjanik is sitting with five suspects in similar affairs – organization of a series of explosions in Odessa, as well as attempts to kill an activist Gordienko “- also wrote the former deputy of the city council Dmitriev.
As TIMER wrote on March 3, court hearings scheduled for that date in regards to the appeals by the two suspects in the kidnapping were postponed. The reason is that Kushnaryov and Slobodjanik expressed a desire to attend a hearing of the Appeals Court of Odessa region in the consideration of their complaints, but they were not brought to court.
The defense said that the charges against Slobodjanik are based on witness testimony, by the certian Mikhail Semenovich Zhukov, who is actually a former member of the Odessa City Council, Paul Serebryanik.