The Attack on Yanukovych’s Lawyers: Kiev Shows How It Will Crack Down on Ukrainians

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard


Criminal proceedings against the lawyers representing Viktor Yanukovych’s interests are an attempt by the authorities to frighten and push inconvenient lawyers away from the legal process and a response to them defending the same human rights that are violated in Ukraine.

This was reported to the “” publication by one of the lawyers of the AVER LEX law firm Vitaly Serdyuk, who represents Viktor Yanukovych’s interests.

“The criminal proceedings launched by the Kiev local prosecutor’s office against the lawyers defending Viktor Yanukovych are an example of how the judicial prosecutor’s system works and will further work against every Ukrainian that it finds objectionable. At first two dozen police officers lunged at the lawyers directly in the courtroom, and then the prosecutor’s office opens a criminal case against us,” noted the lawyer.

According to him, yesterday’s actions of the Obolonsky district court is the illegal involvement of the state lawyer Yury Ryabovol, the services of who the client himself refused (at the same time, for the first time in the history of Ukraine, at the request of the court 7 lawyers have participated in proceedings, contrary to the 5 admissible under the law), the refusal to hear the evidence of the defence, the testimonies of witnesses, and attempts to finish the process as soon as possible. This is an obvious example of how “the authorities behave against their citizens”.

In this case, it is against lawyers who spoiled the plans of the authorities to pronounce a guilty verdict to Yanukovych as soon as possible.

“This is a signal to anyone who will dare to go against the authorities, that the authorities will do what they want with them. This is the open trampling on the basic rights of citizens guaranteed by the Constitution — to a fair trial, to a defence, to inviolability. And if such things happen in an open political process, then it isn’t difficult to imagine how ‘justice’ is served against the ordinary citizen,” stressed the lawyer.

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