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Police detain third suspect in Chornovol attack (UPDATED) (VIDEO)

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Dec. 26, 2013, 6:47 p.m. | Ukraine — by Kyiv Post

Serhiy Kotenko, the third man suspected of viciously beating journalist and activist Tetyana Chornovol, was put on the wanted list on Dec. 25
© mvs.gov.ua

Kyiv Post

 The third suspect in the case of assault on journalist and activist Tetyana Chornovol was detained and is being questioned by the police, the Interior Ministry said in a statement posted on its website.

The police gave no other details about the arrest. On Dec. 25 29-year-old Serhiy Kotenko was put on the wanted list in this case. Journalists have discovered that Kotenko was the owner of the vehicle that blocked Chornovol's car right before she was attacked by three men.

Two others suspects were detained several hours after the assault, which took place  outside Kyiv about 1:30 a.m. on Dec. 25.

Chornovol received multiple injuries as a result of the attack, including a broken nose, a lot of tissue damage on her face, and a concussion of the brain. Her car was pushed into a roadside ditch after the attack. She was taken to the hospital and underwent stitching and other treatments, doctors said.

The police originally said it was a case of hooliganism, but after questioning Chornovol, changed the qualification of this case to "infliction of bodily damage." If proved in court, this crime can be punished by seven to 10 years in jail.

Chornovol herself said that her recent investigative work might have triggered an attack.

"(Recently) I went to the property of (Interior Minister Vitaliy) Zakharchenko and (General Prosecutor Viktor) Pshonka," she told Channel 5 from her hospital bed.

"It could have also been connected to the fact that I recently uncovered a new Mezhyhirya of (President Viktor) Yanukovych. Not the one in Novi Petrivtsi, but the one in Koncha-Zaspa (suburbs of Kyiv), an even more lavish one he has built and is having decorated," she said.

Chornovol has entered the compound of Yanukovych's Mezhihirya mansion, taking photos of the place until she was noticed by security in August  2012.

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