Commenting on the media reports about an SBU agent in charge of intercepting Kurchenko’s phone conversations who has allegedly defected to Russia leaving the PGO without some hard evidence making the recent developments look like a special operation of the FSB, Lutsenko said: "I reject this version. It’s a rather obtuse way to defend those whom we recorded receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars and euros and making cooperation arrangements with Kurchenko and his FSB supervisors. We were intercepting conversations of the FSB officer, Kurchenko, Saakashvili's associate Severion Dangadze, and later Saakashvili personally called Kurchenko using his own cell phone, which we have recorded."
The prosecutor general once again confirmed PGO’s willingness to engage foreign experts in examination of these wiretappings.
"We have got the device that was used for wiretapping, two witnesses who transferred funds under our supervision, the wiretappings. Both technical and international examinations can be conducted in conjunction with foreign experts. That will be sufficient for a serious pre-trial investigation," he said.
Lutsenko added that this was only "the first stage of the foiled plan of the FSB called “the Russian winter in Kyiv.”
“I know what I'm talking about. And I will come to the parliament in due time to foil its second stage. This will definitely happen," he added.
On Dec. 5, the law enforcers detained Saakashvili on charges of assisting crime ring members. His supporters blocked off the paddy wagon with the detained politician inside and later released him. During the search in Saakashvili's apartment, he went up to the roof of the house and was apprehended by the law enforcers there.
Prosecutor General of Ukraine Yurii Lutsenko later said that runaway oligarch Serhii Kurchenko funded Saakashvili's activities in Ukraine.
Early Dec. 6, a clash between law enforcers and supporters of the former Odesa region governor took place outside the Ukrainian parliament early Dec. 5 when police tried to storm the tent camp in order to locate and detain Saakashvili.
The police apprehended Saakashvili in Kyiv’s Solomianskyi district late Dec. 8. He was charged under part 2 of article 256 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (providing assistance to crime ring members and concealment of their criminal activity) punishable by 5 to 10 years in prison.
Being placed in Kyiv-based detention center, the politician went on an indefinite hunger strike.
Saakashvili walked free from the courtroom late Dec. 11 as the court imposed no pre-trial restriction on him.