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Interior Ministry: Fifth suspect in attack on Chornovol confesses beating journalist (UPDATE)

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Dec. 28, 2013, 3:46 p.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine

A fifth suspected attacker of journalist Tetiana Chornovol has confessed that he took part in beating Chornovol, the public relations department of the Interior Ministry of Ukraine reported.
© Anastasia Vlasova

A fifth suspected attacker of Tetiana Chornovol confessed that he took part in beating the journalist and was arrested by court order, the Interior Ministry said.

According to the testimony of the suspect, he personally took part in beating the victim, reads the statement.

The Interior Ministry said that the suspect was detained on Dec. 27. He is a 34-year-old resident of Dniprodzerzhynsk in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast and worked in a security guard service. He said that he came to Kyiv to buy the Porsche Cayenne car which had forced Chornovol's vehicle off the highway near Kyiv.

The investigation plans to conduct cross-questioning of the suspects to reconstruct the crime.

Early Dec. 25 at 1:30 a.m., a group of men beat Chornovol near the city of Hora in Kyiv Oblast. She was driving her car when she was cut off by a dark-colored car. Unidentified individuals pulled the journalist out of the car and beat her, leave her in a ditch.

The police first opened criminal proceedings into disorderly conduct, but later opened a case involving the more serious offense of causing grievous bodily harm.

The other suspects involved in the attack are identified as Oleksandr Khramtsov, Andriy Nasikovsky, Serhiy Kotenko and his brother Oleksandr Kotenko. Nasikovsky hosted Serhiy Kotenko in his flat on the night the crime was committed. The name of the fifth suspect has not been disclosed.

The Porsche Cayenne car used in the attack on Chornovol was registered as belonging to Khramtsov. However, some media reported that Khramtsov sold this car to Kotenko, who had paid only a part of the total price to Khramtsov.

Chornovol is a well-known journalist and social activist who has published a series of investigative materials concerning incumbent high-ranking officials.

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