Ukraine’s top prosecutor, Andriy Kostin, announced during Monday’s telethon that his office was launching an internal investigation of the nation’s prosecutors in the previously occupied territories of Ukraine, and in other areas near the war’s frontlines.
The Prosecutor General responded to a journalist’s question as to how he would clear his ranks of collaborators who had betrayed the nation during the ongoing Russian invasion. Kostin assured the journalist that he had already “signed an order to conduct an internal investigation of the staff of the prosecutor’s offices of the frontline regions of Ukraine, including those that were temporarily occupied by the Russian military.”
The prosecutor was emphatic that taking a deep-dive examination of anyone accused of betrayal was necessary to catch and prosecute those who had served Moscow’s desires over their own nation’s needs.
The investigation and prosecution of collaborators will not be limited to the nation’s prosecutors or state employees, but anyone who assisted the invading Russian military.
In the past few weeks there have been significant shake-ups in several government branches, including the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU. The Prosecutor General commented that any evidence indicating that any employee of the government had given “assistance to the aggressor should be given an appropriate assessment, and that all those involved should be brought to criminal responsibility.”
The Prosecutor’s Office was no different, according to Kostin, who indicated that five civil servants of his entity and three prosecutors have already been notified of suspicion of collaboration. In Ukraine, a notification of suspicion indicates that a criminal investigation has been launched and remains active, and typically precedes the launch of a formal prosecution. In the case of the General Prosecutor’s Office (GPO), the formal prosecution of one former employee has already begun.
The work will undoubtedly take time, according to Kostin, as more than 600 employees of his Office will have their activities examined by the GPO.
Earlier this month, it was reported that Ukrainian authorities had launched nearly 500 cases against Ukrainians who were thought to have collaborated with Russians during the temporary occupation.
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