Monitoring the trial of V. Yanukovych (court hearing July 15, 2019)

On July 15, a hearing was held in the Kiev Court of Appeal in the case of the ex-president of Ukraine V. Yanukovych. On January 24, the Obolonsky District Court of Kiev pronounced a verdict on ex-President of Ukraine V. Yanukovych, convicting him of high treason (Article 111 of the CPC) and complicity in the planning, preparation and conduct of an aggressive war (Articles 27, 437 of the CPC).

Once again, there was no court session, since there was a malfunction in the automated distribution system of judges and because of this, a substitute judge was not selected. In this regard, the panel adjourned the hearing to September. The parties did not object to the forced transfer.

Recall that the previous session was held on June 13, that is, considering the last postponement, it takes about 3 months to conduct a preparatory hearing for the current judicial system. De jure, there are no procedural violations on the part of the participants in the trial, but de facto, the imperfection of the system gives rise to a violation of the principle of reasonableness of the time limits for judicial review. In the process of their monitoring, ISHR observers systematically note a violation of this principle (the cases of Shchegolev, Yezhov, Mastikasheva, etc.). More than once, ISHR experts wrote that compliance with this principle is a basic guarantee of fair justice. The ECtHR emphasizes the importance of this principle in its decisions and recognizes the right of every person prosecuted in a criminal case to receive a final decision within a reasonable time on the validity of the charges against him (“Julia Manzoni v. Italy”), more precisely, an object in a criminal case is the achievement that the accused do not remain for a long time under the weight of the charge (“Vemkhov v. Germany”). In addition, the ECtHR notes that the duration of criminal proceedings to assess its reasonableness is calculated from the day when the person becomes the accused until the end on the day the final conviction or acquittal is issued (“Imbriosha v. Switzerland “,” Kalashnikov v. Russia”).

As already mentioned in the previous report, the defense is determined and plans to finally exercise its legal right, namely, to interrogate all the witnesses (the court of the first instance refused this), it is also planned to conduct repeated examinations. And of course, the question of the illegality of involving a public defender in the trial will be raised.

Experts from the International Society for Human Rights will continue to monitor and clarify the details of this trial. The previous materials can be found here.