18 December 2017

Saakashvili wanted under three Criminal Code articles

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Ukrainian Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko's press secretary Larysa Sargan has announced leader of the Movement of New Forces Party, former governor of Odesa region and ex-president of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili is suspected of committing crime under Part 1 of Article 15, Part 2 of Article 28, and Part 2 of Article 256 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine. reports citing UNIAN.

Part 1 of Article 15 is an "attempted crime," Part 2 of Article 28 is "committing crime by a group of persons, a group of persons by prior agreement, an organized group or a criminal organization." As UNIAN reported earlier, the SBU and prosecutors raided an apartment where Saakashvili resides on Kostiolna Street. Later, Saakashvili was detained and put into an SBU van, but a crowd of supporters of the politician, who is now challenging Ukraine's decision on stripping him of Ukrainian citizenship, blocked the car from driving away.

Clashes between law enforcers and activists followed. Then, someone from the crowd smashed the van's windows, damaged the back door, and helped Saakashvili get out of the vehicle. Law enforcers limited themselves to using tear gas during the clashes. After the "escape," Saakashvili led his supporters to rally outside the Verkhovna Rada where Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko was presenting evidence of the politician's wrongdoings. The SBU informed the press that Saakashvili had been detained as part of a criminal investigation into his assistance to members of criminal organizations and concealment of their criminal activities (Article 256 of the Criminal Code).

Lutsenko said that Saakashvili had organized protests in order to seize state power in Ukraine and help members of the criminal group associated with the former Ukrainian President, Viktor Yanukovych, and a young tycoon from Yanukovych team, Serhiy Kurchenko, in hindering the process of their criminal prosecution.

In turn, Saakashvili denied Lutsenko's accusations of assisting participants in criminal organizations. On December 6, the security forces tried to storm Saakashvili supporters' tent camp in Kyiv's Mariyinsky Park, which is close to the Verkhovna Rada's building. There were about a hundred law enforcers. Protesters began to defend themselves, using firecrackers. The police resorted to tear gas and piled the fence. In response, people began to beat them with wooden and metal bars, and the law enforcers had to retreat. Later, the police said they had chosen the assault because they were carrying out an operation to search for Saakashvili, who is on the wanted list. The law enforcers also claimed activists had attempted to provoke them during the operation. None of the protesters has been detained, the police said. About 10 people were reportedly injured as a result of clashes between the police and the protesters.

2017.12.06 / 14:12
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