The Appeals Court in Kyiv recognized illegal the attachment of the retirement account of former Head of the Ukrainian Government Mykola Azarov.
The appeal petition with the request to unfreeze pension savings of Mykola Azarov, who has been hiding in Russia, was filed by the lawyer to challenge the decision of the court below - the Pechersk district court in Kyiv had banned the payment of pension to the former prime minister in Dec. 2015.
The attachment was sanctioned within the criminal investigation carried out by the Prosecutor General's Office into embezzlement of 220 million hryvnia during construction of a blue phone line at the facilities of Ukrtelecom. It should be reminded that the law enforcement agencies accused the former leadership of the country that the telephone antibugged line had been funded from the state budget, while it should had been financed by the new owners who acquired Ukrtelecom five years ago.
In this criminal proceeding, Azarov was mentioned as an accomplice of ex-president Viktor Yanukovych - one of the key suspects in the case.
According to the lawyer, the pension cannot be confiscated under the law.
It became clear during the trial that Azarov has been provided pension coverage since Feb. 2008. The size of the retirement benefit is 17,252 hryvnia (about $660 at a current exchange rate) monthly while the payments should be made on the 11th day of each month to the ex-official's account in Oshchadbank savings bank. However, the prosecution failed to specify the exact amount of money on Azarov's account.
After hearing the arguments of the prosecutor, who objected against lifting of the attachment, and the arguments of the lawyer, the Kyiv Appeals Court held that the demand of Azarov's defense was justified.
As a result, the Court held that "the retirement benefit seizure cannot be recognized as lawful and justified" and lifted the attachment from the pension benefits of Mykola Azarov.