Penitentiary service: Lutsenko's meetings not being tapped

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Sept. 11, 2012, 2:19 p.m. | Politics — by Interfax-Ukraine

Yuriy Lutsenko, former Ukrainian interior minister ally of the jailed ex-prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko stands in a caged area inside the court during a verdict hearing in Kyiv on February 27, 2012. Lutsenko, who was arrested in December 2010 and has been held in detention ever since, was found guilty by a district court in Kiev of abusing his powers while in office was sentenced to four years in jail in a trial denounced by her supporters as politically motivated.

The privacy of the meetings of former Interior Minister Yuriy Lutsenko, who is serving a sentence in the Mena penal colony in Chernihiv region, is being respected, the State Penitentiary Service of Ukraine reported on Monday, Sept. 10.

"According to the requirements of regulatory acts, the meetings of prisoner Lutsenko with attorneys and defense lawyers are held in a room for short meetings in the Mena colony. The procedure for equipping such rooms is also stipulated by the requirements of regulatory acts. In particular, such rooms are equipped with cabins separated by glass partitions. The cabins have shelves with built-in intercommunication devices (handsets). The confidentiality of the meetings that take place in these rooms has not been violated," reads the statement.

The penitentiary service also said statements by the defense team of the ex-minister that he does not get correspondence are unfounded.

"The procedure for sending or receiving correspondence is also regulated by the Criminal Executive Code of Ukraine and the internal regulations of penal institutions. All appeals [that are made by prisoners or come to prisoners] are recorded in the office of the penal institution, and then they are sent [or transmitted] to recipients. Accordingly, claims about the impossibility of transferring correspondence to prisoner Lutsenko do not reflect reality," reads the document.

Earlier on Monday, Iryna Lutsenko, a defense lawyer and the wife of the defendant, said that she could not have a private conversation with her husband in the Mena prison.

"We again saw Lutsenko behind glass and heard his voice only by phone," she said, pointing to the violation of the rights of defense lawyers and the prisoner.

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