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Volha says he was offered freedom in exchange for pleading guilty

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Sept. 21, 2011, 11:55 a.m. | Politics — by Interfax-Ukraine
The former head of the state commission for financial service markets regulation, Vasyl Volha, has said that he was offered to be released from custody in exchange for pleading guilty in the criminal case against him. "The investigation does not hide that I can stop everything that is happening to me, on one condition: If I admit to doing what I have not done," he said at a sitting of Kyiv Court of Appeal on Tuesday, which was considering his lawyer's appeal against the extension of Volha's arrest.

"Just yesterday, during an eye-to-eye questioning (with Volha's driver Vitaliy Prysiazhniuk) I was told this: If you plead guilty you will be freed and won't suffer any more," the defendant said.

Ukraine's Prosecutor General's Office opened in September another criminal case against Volha, for embezzlement, as in 2010 his driver Vitaliy Prysiazhniuk received the same wage as a chief specialist of a department of the state commission for financial service markets regulation.

The criminal case against Volha and Prysiazhniuk were opened under part three of Article 191 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (embezzlement and misuse of office).

Pretrial investigation is being carried out.

The ex-official had already been charged with accepting a $500,000 bribe.

Volha was detained on July 19, 2011.

On July 20, the Pechersky District Court in Kyiv ruled to place him in custody for two months.

On July 25, Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych dismissed Volha as head of the State Commission for Financial Service Markets Regulation "due to a violation of an oath of civil servant."

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