Annual report of the State Bureau of Investigations: Exposing bribe-takers within its ranks and abusers in law enforcement agencies

The State Bureau of Investigations (DBR) has released its report on its activities for the year 2020.  According to the document, as of the end of 2020, suspicions were reported against 26 employees of the  Prosecutor’s Office, 27 employees of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), 639 employees of the  National Police of Ukraine, and 119 employees of the State Border Guard Service.

Within the DBR

Among the numerous examples in the report, it is recounted that during the pre-trial investigation stage  of a criminal case under Article 189, Part 2 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, a person who  demanded $20,000 from a DBR chief investigator to keep compromising information about the  investigator confidential was arrested. A bribe-taker was also identified among the DBR’s employees – a worker in the central office who demanded and received an illegal benefit of 15,000  hryvnias ($500) from the director of a commercial enterprise in exchange for not intervening in the  company’s financial and economic activities.

«The person in question was informed of  uspicion of committing a criminal offense under Part 5 of Article 27 and Part 3 of Article 368 of the   riminal Code of Ukraine», – the DBR report said. During the inspection of relevant information by  the Internal Control Department, signs of involvement of DBR employees in the demand for an illegal   enefit ($80,000) by investigators from the Territorial Administration of the DBR located in Poltava and  other persons were detected. Four corresponding criminal proceedings were initiated. The pre-trial  investigation has been completed, and the case materials have been sent to court. A total of 436  citizens complaints were received regarding the actions of DBR officials.

Criminal cases

In 2020, the State Bureau of Investigations conducted pre-trial investigations in 43,271 criminal  proceedings. As stated in the document, a significant amount of effort and time was required to  investigate criminal offenses committed by law enforcement officials.

Special attention was paid to the investigation of torture and other  improper conduct. In 2020, 83  indictments were sent to court regarding 117 individuals, including 6 indictments against 15 individuals  under Article 127 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (torture), and others under Part 2 of Article 365  (exceeding authority), Articles 371 (unlawful detention), and 374 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine  (violation of the right to defense). In 2020, 461 indictments were sent to court in criminal proceedings  regarding corruption offenses, of which 261 or 57% were related to the receipt of unlawful benefits  otaling over  19 million hryvnias. In addition, in 2020, the State Bureau of Investigation neutralized 15  criminal communities consisting of 63 participants. Nine criminal groups with corrupt ties were  xposed.  embers of these groups were involved in illegal logging and sale of forest products, fraud, extortion of unlawful benefits, and illegal sale of narcotics.

As a result of the work of the State Bureau of Investigation (DBR), suspicions were reported against 26  employees of the Prosecutor’s Office, 27 employees of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), 639  employees of the National Police of Ukraine, 119 employees of the State Border Guard Service of  Ukraine,  7 employees of the State Penitentiary Service of Ukraine, 155 employees  of the Department of  Labor and Social Welfare, 55 employees of  the authorities responsible for tax law enforcement, and 77  employees of the authorities responsible for controlling the movement of goods across the customs  border.

As a result of the work of the DBR in 2020, 3035 indictments were sent to court. Of these, 461 were  related to corruption offenses, 83 were related to offenses committed by law enforcement officials  regarding the use of torture and other violations of human rights, 36 were related to offenses committed  in the budgetary system, 15 were related to offenses committed by an organized group  or criminal  organization, and only four were related to offenses committed in the field of land relations.

«Justice for Maidan»

The report states that the creation of an independent structural unit within the Bureau, which  investigates criminal offenses committed in connection with the mass protests of 2013-2014, has  improved the effectiveness of pre- trial investigations in cases of this category. During the reporting  period, 23 indictments were sent to court against 28 individuals. 33 employees of the DBR out of 42  planned for this position worked on these results since February of last year. However, the DBR still  faces a problem with staffing. As of the end of 2020, only 65% of positions were filled, with over 1,400  vacancies, and 29 competitive commissions were  established.

On February 15, the DBRannounced the sending of the first indictment in the «Maidan case» to court following the results of a special (pre-trial) investigation. «Charges have been brought  against two civilians who were declared wanted internationally for committing, as part of a criminal  organization, the abduction of participants in the Euromaidan protests, namely Lutsenko I.V., Verbitsky  .T., from the Oleksandrivska Clinical Hospital in Kyiv on the night of January 21, 2014, their subsequent  orture, the  intentional murder of the latter, as well as for unlawful obstruction of rallies and  demonstrations», – the DBR’s website said.

The investigative department for the «Maidan cases» is currently conducting 73 criminal  investigations. 23 indictments have been sent to court against 28 individuals, including 12 law  enforcement officers, 2 prosecutors, 4 judges, and 10 others. In the case of 15 individuals, special (pre- rial) investigation permits have been btained.

справа Майдану

Read the full report of the DBR for 2020 at the link.

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