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 Vendetta in Zakarpattia: In a Year People’s Avengers Torched Over 20 Cars of Officials

Only last year, the oblast saw 20 vehicles of high ranking officials burned down. The audacity and impunity of criminals is staggering, and the police is powerless against arsonists.

ZN.UA obtained the statistics on arsons for the past three years. Figures were provided by the regional emergencies department, as of November 2012. Thus, in 2010 only 6 cars were burned in Zakaropattia, in 2011 - 12, and in November of the 2012 - 15. After that there were at least three other arsons (reported by the media), so by the end of last year about 20 vehicles were torched. Most of them - in Uzhgorod and Mukachevo.

In particular, on the night of July 9, 2011, in a private courtyard of Vinogradov a 2-year-old Mercedes of Khust district prosecutor Ivan Kail was burned down. Arsonists have not been found to date. October 16, 2011 in Uzhgorod Volkswagen-Touran of former deputy chief of the regional police Volodymyr Petrytsiuk was set ablaze (shortly after he retired). Experts stated it was arson. Customers and executors of the crime have not been found.

On February 23, 2012 in broad daylight near the Administrative Court of Zakarpattia oblast VAZ-2109 of the Anti-trafficking and Cybercrime Police Division Mikhailo Danylo was torched. Investigative group found buckets with fuel residues, leather case with keys and a police badge with a seal to close the safe next to the car. Danylo himself described the car as a revenge arson and attempted intimidation by the Department of Internal Security, with which he had a long conflict. The crime was never solved.

On December at 3 a.m. in Mukachevo, in the yard of a private house of city prosecutor Ruslan Bilovar (former first deputy oblast prosecutor), unknown persons doused with fuel and burned his SUV Mersedes Benz ML-350. The arson itself was made on the Prosecutors Day (professional holiday), which is celebrated on December 1. Oblast prosecutor, head of Oblast Police and Investigative Team had immediately arrived at the scene. Investigation of the crime was taken under personal control of the oblast prosecutor, but the arsonists have not been found.

Three weeks later, on the night of December 22 last year, SUV Hyundai Santa Fe of Deputy Mayor Yurii Beliakov was burned down in Uzhgorod. The car was on the avenue under the windows of the house where Beliakov lives. Criminals have not been found.

Law enforcement officials have repeatedly expressed the need to combat arsonists, but the measures have not yielded results. In late January, the Zakarpattia oblast prosecutor Anatoliy Petrunia tsaid at a coordination meeting: "Arson of the law enforcement vehicles, beating the judges, lawyers, attacking deputies is a challenge to the entire law enforcement system of the region. And we will give an adequate response to that."

 
 
 
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