Odessa Massacre “Investigation”: Chloroform Poisoning, Flawed Investigation, & False Examinations

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard




Most of All Questions to Results of a Forensic Medical Examination.

The judicial legal investigation into the events in Odessa on May 2nd, 2014, uncovered a number of shortcomings in the previously completed pre-judicial investigation. This was reported by the public organization Center for Legal Monitoring.

The lawyer Olga Balashova, having analysed the protocols of inspection of the scene, revealed that phototables were attached to documents. But the origin of the pictures isn’t known.

Besides this, the fact that a large part of Grecheskaya city was examined on May 15th, almost two weeks after the tragedy, causes questions.

“After all, it is well known that already early in the morning on 3.05.2014 the big team of janitors of the Primorsky district on someone’s order came to clean the city center, swept and threw all material evidences into the bin – sleeves, cartridges, bottles from incendiary mixtures, washed away blood both on the asphalt and on the walls of houses. So what at the time did the investigators examine?” asked Balashova.

Also the lawyer highlighted the problem with the results of the forensic medical examination. According to her, it was done not during the process of examining the victims themselves, but according to medical documents.

Press Conference of the Criminalist Running From Ukraine on the Case of the Odessa Tragedy on May 2nd

The forensic expert Sergey Iskruk who couple of days ago could leave the territory of Ukraine, gave an interview in Donetsk during which he spoke about his participation in the Ukrainian “investigation” into the events of the Odessa Massacre.

On August 9th at 13:00 the press conference of the criminalist Sergey Iskruk on the case of the Odessa tragedy took place.

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Chemical poisoning became a cause of death of people in the Odessa House of Trade Unions on May 2nd, 2014. This was stated on August 9th by the criminalist Sergey Iskruk who participated in the investigation of the tragedy and who left Ukraine.

“According to the conclusions of forensic scientists, traces of chloroform were found in the blood. If to take the physical and chemical process, chloroform if exposed to light or fire turns into phosgene. It is possible to come to the conclusion that in this case chloroform was used, which turned into a toxic agent — phosgene — when it was exposed to fire,” reported Iskruk.

He noted that in the event of the death of a person from a fire or suffocation the body takes the so-called “boxer’s pose”. “According to the materials of the criminal case, the deceased weren’t at all in this pose, all the bodies were in a relaxed state,” emphasised the expert.

Thus, according to him, the conclusions of criminalists testify to the thorough preparation of killing in the Odessa House of Trade Unions.

Scandal: The Examination of the Bodies of Some of Those Who Died on May 2nd Never Actually Took Place

The new materials of criminal proceedings to the case of May 2nd, filed at the request of the Prosecutor, contain an enormous number of procedural violations that characterize well the quality of the work of the investigation into this case in principle.

As a reminder, this concerns about four volumes of criminal proceedings, which the state prosecution didn’t earlier consider it necessary to provide for studying in court. However now, when all other remaining proof of the prosecution was studied and the case went towards passing a verdict, the Prosecutor’s Office suddenly “remembered” about these materials and decided that the court should examine them. Prosecutor Kuprina addressed the corresponding appeal to the court already on August 2nd and received consent.

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However, it would better if she didn’t do it, because becoming acquainted with these materials forces to doubt the qualification and in general the professional suitability of the law enforcement bodies who prepared them.

For example, the premises of the “Afina” Shopping Center, in which on May 2nd, 2014, activists of Kulikovo field took cover, were examined by law enforcement bodies in the absence of the owners of these buildings or their representatives. At the time the law enforcement bodies examined the “Afina” Shopping Center  directly on May 2nd, while the examination of the vicinities of shopping center where the main collisions took place — only on May 15th, i.e. two (!) weeks later. The photos of the examination of the place of events are attached to protocols, while in the protocols themselves it is highlighted that photographs weren’t taken because of a malfunction of the equipment.

Particular interest is caused by the results of the forensic medical examinations of the victims. Firstly, experts examined not the victims, but studied the medical documents provided to them in an unclear way in circumvention of the existing criminal procedure legislation. Secondly, one of experts, namely Derkach, doesn’t appear in the register of experts of Ministry of Justice, i.e. he can’t carry out any examination at all. Thirdly, the Odessa bureau of forensic medical examination had no right at all to carry out any examination since according to the law of Ukraine “On judicial examination” only State specialized institutions have the right to carry out forensic medical examinations, which the criminal department of the “Odessa Bureau of Forensic Medical Examination” doesn’t have.

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In particular, it was found out that the bodies of a number of the dead on Grecheskaya Square and in its vicinities… in general wasn’t examined by experts. The latter worked only with certain “acts of investigation”, which were conducted by unknown persons (definitely not by the experts bearing responsibility for the false conclusions) according to the order of persons on duty of the regional department (!). And the examination as such was appointed already after the bodies were given to relatives for burial, so experts in their work were obliged to rely on papers where it isn’t clear who made them and how the experts obtained them. It is a brazen violation of the provided by the Criminal Procedure Code of Ukraine order of examination and, according to lawyers of the victims, makes these case papers in general unsuitable for use in court.

Besides this, fears were once again confirmed that some of the people who are victims in the case of events on Grecheskaya Square in reality generally have no relation to this. From more than 30 victims, 5 for sure received wounds not on Grecheskaya Square, but on Kulikovo field, a place where five more were wounded, needs specification. In other words, these people in general can’t appear as the victims in the case of events on Grecheskaya Square and must be excluded from the list of victims. And it means the modification of the conclusion and indictment — i.e. there will be a need for a new hearing of the case, and it turns out that two and a half years of judicial hearings were spent for nothing.

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