At an evening plenary session on Thursday the Verkhovna Rada backed the nomination by Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko to appoint leader of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc parliamentary faction Yuriy Lutsenko as prosecutor general of Ukraine. Corresponding resolution No. 4654 introduced by the head of state earlier on Thursday was supported by 264 lawmakers.

In particular, the resolution was supported by 132 members of the Poroshenko Bloc, 73 members of the People’s Front, 23 members of the Vidrodzhennia (the Revival) parliamentary group, 17 members of the People’s Will faction, three members of the Opposition Bloc, one of the Radical Party faction, and three independent MPs.

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Immediately after parliament endorsed the appointment of Lutsenko as the prosecutor general of Ukraine, Rada Speaker Andriy Parubiy signed the relevant resolution, and the president signed the corresponding decree.

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After this the Verkhovna Rada terminated Lutsenko’s powers as a member of parliament.

The newly appointed prosecutor general then took the oath of a member of the Supreme Council of Justice of Ukraine, whom he became after the appointment.

Earlier on Thursday, the Verkhovna Rada approved and the president signed bill No. 4645 on changes to some legislative acts regarding the work of the Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine.

Under the law, a citizen who has a university education, and at least five years of working experience in law, or experience of working in a legislative and law enforcement body, can become prosecutor general of Ukraine. The law degree requirement has been removed from the list of requirements for candidates to the post of prosecutor general.

Lutsenko was born in Rivne on Dec. 14, 1964. In 2005-2006, Lutsenko headed the Interior Ministry and held this post in three successive governments, led by Prime Ministers Yulia Tymoshenko, Yuriy Yekhanurov and Viktor Yanukovych. In December 2007 – January 2010, he headed the Interior Ministry in the government of Yulia Tymoshenko.

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Lutsenko was detained on Dec. 26, 2010, on charges of embezzlement. Kyiv Pechersky District Court found the ex-minister guilty of a number of counts of abuse of office and sentenced him to four years in prison.

On Aug. 17, 2012, Pechersky district court also found the ex-minister guilty of negligence in prolonging investigative operations regarding former Deputy Chief of the Security Service of Ukraine Volodymyr Satsiuk’s driver Valentyn Davydenko, and sentenced Lutsenko to two years in prison. In April 2013 then Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych signed a decree pardoning several convicts, including Lutsenko. The ex-minister was released on the same day.

Lutsenko is the leader of the Third Ukrainian Republic public movement. From 2006 to 2012, he chaired the People’s Self-Defense party, from 2007 to 2012 he was a co-chairman of the Our Ukraine – People’s Self Defense Bloc, from 2014 to May 12, 2015 he was member of parliament.

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