Tax police resumes four criminal cases against Tymoshenko

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Nov. 7, 2011, 12:14 p.m. | Politics — by Interfax-Ukraine

A police officer looks on at a tent camp in support of former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko in Khreshchatyk, the main street in Kyiv, Ukraine, Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2011.
© AP

Tax police investigators have served former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko copies of a resolution to open four criminal cases concerning the activities of the United Energy Systems of Ukraine (UESU), the head of the former premier's defense team, Serhiy Vlasenko, has said. "Tax police employees informed Yulia Volodymyrivna [Tymoshenko] on Friday that they have resumed the investigation of four criminal cases involving Yulia Volodymyrivna. Employees of the investigative department gave her copies of four resolutions on criminal cases," Vlasenko said at a press conference on Monday.

Vlasenko said that all of the four resolutions concerned the activities of the UESU in 1996-1997, in particular, tax evasion.

He said that Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Pshonka, while canceling the resolutions of former Prosecutor General Sviatoslav Piskun (2001-2003), had provided no arguments.

"The decision to close the cases was made illegally, and these are all of the arguments," Vlasenko said.

He recalled that the criminal cases under which Piskun issues resolutions to close the cases were opened in 2001, ahead of elections, and in 2005 the Supreme Court of Ukraine "said that the cases were closed in a justified way."

"Now these cases are being resumed… There are no grounds to cancel the resolutions [on the closure of criminal cases]," Vlasenko said.

He said that a pre-trial investigation into these cases would be conducted by the main investigative department of tax police at the State Tax Service.

"I don't know whether investigative actions were carried out or not," he said.

The first deputy leader of the Batkivschyna Party, Oleksandr Turchynov, in turn, noted that the documents on the reopening of the investigation of cases had no reference to rulings by U.S. and Russian courts, as the Prosecutor General's Office stated, while explaining new circumstances for the resumption of criminal cases.

Turchynov said that there were no legal grounds in Pshonka's decision and that "there are only political motives." He also said that the statute of limitations for the investigation of these criminal cases had expired.

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