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You're reading: Ex-defence minister of Ukraine Ivashchenko sentenced to five years in prison (updated)

Pechersky District Court of Kyiv has sentenced former Acting Defense Minister of Ukraine Valeriy Ivaschenko to five years in prison and barred him from fulfillment of organizational and administrative activities in state agencies for three years.

Ivaschenko was also stripped of the second rank of public official. The court also sentenced the former manager of the reorganization of Feodosiya shipbuilding and mechanical plant, Serhiy Mikheyev, to three years in prison and forbade him to hold public positions for three years. The court announced the sentences on Thursday.

Valeriy Ivaschenko has said that the verdict given by the Pechersky District Court of Kyiv in his trial is unjust."I had no illusions about the verdict. The sentence is identical to the indictment that was written by prosecutors in January 2011.

I have every reason to believe that the sentence is unjust," he said in the courtroom on Thursday after the verdict against him was announced.Ivaschenko described the Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine as a "criminal organization" and reminded the judges and prosecutors of criminal liability for illegal and unlawful actions and decisions and noted that "it’s only a matter of time" for them.

As reported, on August 20, 2010, the Prosecutor General’s Office opened a criminal case against Ivaschenko under Part 2, Article 364 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (abuse of power or office).

In November 2009, Ivaschenko signed a bailout plan concerning the sale of the property of the Defense Ministry’s state-owned enterprise Feodosiya shipbuilding and mechanical plant, including strategically important infrastructure facilities, including three moorings, bomb shelters and a building for the storage of mobilization reserves.

Ivaschenko was detained. He also was hospitalized in Kyiv Hospital of Emergency Aid and announced a hunger strike. After an examination, doctors recommended Ivaschenko to be treated in a neurological hospital. In late December 2011, the court ordered treatment for Ivaschenko. At the same time, lawyer Borys Nechyporenko stated that the penitentiary service held regular medical examinations of his client instead of treating him.

Ivaschenko refused to attend court sittings on his case several times due to poor health, and asked for an ambulance to be called for him. The State Penitentiary Service of Ukraine said that Ivaschenko’s health condition was satisfactory and that he could participate in the court process. The state prosecution asked for Ivaschenko to be sentenced to six years in prison and banned from holding public posts for three years, without confiscation of property.

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