Letter by Oleg Bakhmatyuk, Chairman of Ukrlandfarming Group, to Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova
On 5 June 2020, the Pechersk District Court of Kiev City dotted all the i’s over our 8-month struggle for justice in a fabricated case unlawfully reopened by the first deputy to the former Prosecutor General Ryaboshapka, Vitaliy Kasko. The Court expressly pointed to a number of flagrant violations of the law and compelled you as Prosecutor General to annul the unlawful decision to reopen the criminal case against me and my company.
Our company became a hostage to a personal vendetta pursued by Artem Sytnyk, a hostage to a conspiracy orchestrated by now former public officials, Andriy Bohdan and Vitaliy Kasko. They reopened criminal proceedings that had been investigated earlier by law enforcement authorities that had decided to close them. The lawfulness and reasonableness of the decision by the law enforcement authority to close the case has been confirmed by the Prosecutor General’s Office and court.
The Pechersk District Court acknowledged the unlawfulness of Kasko’s actions. It’s been 16 days since the court decision, and the Prosecutor General’s Office has not complied with it. This decision is expected by an economic actor, which is important for Ukraine, a company that has contributed UAH 7.7 billion in taxes over the past 3 years; it generates 1% of the national GDP and provides decent work to 27 thousand Ukrainians. I join in calling on you to comply with the lawful court decision After all, the Prosecutor General’s Office has always complied with court decisions in other cases.
We suspect that the delay in execution of the judgement may be politically motivated rather than driven by adherence to the law. We wish we were wrong. After all, it was you who said in an interview that you were ‘equally distant from politics and that the Office of the Prosecutor General is not playing into anyone’s hand’, and you also promised when addressing Parliament to faithfully abide by the rule of law.
The binding nature of a court decision is one of the fundamental principles of the rule of law. This particular judgement is crucial for a company that is working, creating Ukrainian products and paying taxes despite the unprecedented pressure, economic crisis and the pandemic. We ask you to pay attention to this situation and personally ensure that the Office of the Prosecutor General complies with the court’s definitive order to annul the unlawful decision to reopen the criminal case. Our company must work for Ukraine’s benefit and continue to contribute to the government budget.