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 Hearing of high treason case against former president of Ukraine Yanukovych. Live updates (ended)

At 10 a.m., June 29, trial over former president of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych started in Obolonskyi district of Kyiv. Yanukovych is charged with high treason, assistance in waging aggressive war, and aiding in violation of territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine that led to casualties and other grave consequences.

Censor.NET correspondent was providing live updates from the trial room.

14:48 The next hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. July 6.

14:45 Court decides on the procedure: it will start from examining written evidence of both the defense and the prosecution. After that, the court will decide how many witnesses will be questioned, and in what order.

14:40 Lawyers say that the questioning must start from defense witnesses, then the rest of them. They say that some witnesses are featured both by the side of the defense and the side of the prosecution, and that the total number of them is 143.

14:36 Prosecutor Krym said this request was absurd, as Yanukovych must show up in court for explanations.

Judge Deviatko stresses that if Yanukovych shows up, the trial will have to start over, from the indictment.

14:30 Lawyer says the court should ask the suspect if the indictment is clear for him, as well as ask if he pleads guilty.

14:25 Lawyer Serdiuk said that the indictment consisted of "general political slogans dictated by PGO, second - citations from international legislation, the third - description of Crimea events and how Ukraine lost some facilities and Crimea. No cause and effect relationship."

14:18 Jury returned to the room.

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13:25 During the break, the lawyers told the reporters they would file a suit in the European Human Rights Court against the judges decision to trial their client in absentia. They believe this to be a human rights violation, and called the indictment read out by prosecutors 'hollow.'

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13:20 Prosecutors finish reading the indictment. A break was announced.

13:12 Prosecutor Ruslan Kravchenko continues reading the indictment. He says that Yanukovych's activities caused damage to the state worth more than 1 trillion hryvnia ($37.76 billion at current exchange rate).

13:06 Prosecutor Krym says that Russian government used the letter to justify its invasion in Crimea. On March 1, Russian Envoy to U.N. Vitaly Churkin said there was a letter from Yanukovych, and showed it on a meeting on March 3.

12:56 "Being the head of state, Yanukovych violated his oath, did nothing to secure territorial integrity of Ukraine," prosecutor says. Instead, he withdrew from authority and left for Russia.

He reminded that Yanukovych possibly knew of the activities of the Russian military, but he did nothing. On March 1, in cahoots with the Russian authorities and to create the legitimacy of Russian invasion in Crimea, Yanukovych wrote a letter to President Putin.

"In this context, I appeal to the President of Russia Vladimir V. Putin to use the armed forces of the Russian Federation to re-establish the rule of law, peace, order, stability and to protect the people of Ukraine," the letter reads.

12:34 Prosecutor Maksym Krym continues reading. He describes Russian military installing checkpoints at Crimea entrance from mainland Ukraine, seizing military airbase and units in Sevastopol, and control over TV, communication, and cell phone and regular phone channels.

12:20 Prosecutor Kravchenko reminds that in 2013, Russia decided to prevent Ukraine from EU integration. Moscow drafted a plan on seizing Ukraine, prosecutor says.

12:18 "Thus, Yanukovych was supposed to act in the interests of Ukraine's state and people," prosecutor reads.

Despite that, prosecutor Kravchenko says, Yanukovych "committed a high treason acting in interests of the Russian Federation."

Prosecutor cites the norms of the Constitution providing that territorial integrity could only be changed through national referendum, and Crimea and Sevastopol are part of Ukraine.

12:10 Prosecutor Kravchenko starts reading the indictment.

11:58 Lawyers Serdiuk and Fedorenko say the court did not allow them provide evidence for reasons behind Yanukovych's absence. They ask to read out the entire indictment, agreed on March 14, 2017.

11:54 Judge Deviatko reads out their ruling to conduct special investigation. This means the judge granted the motion by the prosecution, and Yanukovych will be tried in absentia. The decision could not be appealed.

11:50 Judges returned from the jury room.

10:56 Judges leave for the jury room.

10:55 Serdiuk adds Yanukovych has been threated by MPs Yemets and Herashchenko and insists that his client's live remains under a risk, so he cannot show up for the trial, and should not be convicted in absentia.

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Yanukovych defense provided a list of names of the people, his bodyguards, who should be questioned as witnesses.

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Lawyer Vitalii Serdiuk

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Lawyer Ihor Fedorenko

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Prosecutors of the Chief Military Prosecutor's Office of Ukraine - Ruslan Kravchenko and Maksym Krym

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Judges Kostiantyn Vasalatii, Vladyslav Deviatko, and Maksym Tytov

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10:48Judge Deviatko says to defense that the jury decided to refuse questioning these witnesses, as long as the defense has not provided any proofs they have newer evidence, not that of 2014, which the court already has.

10:36 Judge Deviatko asks what kind of information witnesses have. Lawyer Serdiuk says they can witness that Yanukovych is still being threatened, and risks his life if crosses Ukraine's border.

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10:28 Judge Deviatko says Lutsenko made statements outside of the trial, so the court sees no need for the prosecutor general to be present.

Lawyer Serdiuk says that the court must question state guards accompanying Yanukovych right before he fled Ukraine, and hear from them that Yanukovych was forced to flee.

"His life is under threat until now," Serdiuk says explaining why Yanukovych cannot arrive at the hearing.

10:23 Lawyer Serdiuk also says the group of prosecutors has committed violations as well. He says the group includes not only Krym and Kravchenko, who are present at the hearing, but also Prosecutor General Yurii Lutsenko. As long as Lutsenko is not present, he should be held disciplinary liable.

10:19 Judge Deviatko says he is not aware of any cases against judges, so he does not see any pressure upon court.


10:11 Lawyer Vitalii Serdiuk announced a request to stop the hearing as long as Judges Vasalatii and Tytov are under disciplinary penalty. He says this means that Obolonskyi court is under pressure.

Serdiuk also says that chief Judge Deviatko allowed for several violations of the defense rights of the suspect. He says Yanukovych has not been summoned or indicted.

10:09 Prosecutor Kravchenko reads out the request of trial in absentia. He reports that Yanukovych is registered in Mezhyhiria residence in the Kyiv region, but possibly resides in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. Prosecutor says Yanukovych is hiding from the pre-trial investigation and the court, and has been put on national wanted list.

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10:08 Secretary told Judge Deviatko that suspect Viktor Yanukovych has not shown up for the trial, although had been summoned.

10:06 Judge Vladyslav Deviatko opened the hearing.

10:05 Judges enter the room.

09:46 Media pool represented at the trial.

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09:41Lawyers of Viktor Yanukovych: Ihor Fedorenko and Vitalii Serdiuk.

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09:26Obolonskyi district court of Kyiv.

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During the most recent hearing, prosecutors requested trial over Yanukovych in absentia as long as he is hiding from prosecution in Russia. The hearing was then postponed until June 29.

 
 
 
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