Lutsenko urges Saakashvili to come for questioning voluntarily
Police acted absolutely lawfully in their attempt to detain Movement of New Forces leader Mikheil Saakashvili, and he should voluntarily appear before an investigator and provide testimony in the criminal case opened against him, Ukrainian Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko said.
"The night's events were absolutely lawful, because Mr. Saakashvili was declared wanted after his escape, and the Security Service and the Interior Ministry are supposed to detain him, and this is a lawful and necessary action in any country," Lutsenko said at the Verkhovna Rada on Wednesday.
At the same time, Lutsenko admitted that the special services "could have been more efficient."
"Twelve Security Service officials who were transporting Saakashvili for questioning yesterday, all of them ATO [the antiterrorist operation in Donbas] participants [...] The law entitled them to fire for effect, but we care about the state, while Saakashvili is hiding behind the backs of Ukrainians [...] and cares only about shocks in this state," he said.
"Saakashvili will be detained, and the best he can do, at least if he is really a man and if he loves Ukraine even slightly, he should come to Volodymyrska Street today to give testimony to the investigators. This is the only way not to destroy Ukraine," he said.
Asked whether Saakashvili would be indicted under any other article of the Ukrainian Criminal Code but Article 256 (complicity with members of a criminal organization), Lutsenko replied in the negative.
Saakashvili, in the presence of his lawyer, was presented with a detention report on Tuesday, and he was supposed to appear before investigators, where he would have received a notice of suspicion, he said.
"Saakashvili is not suspected of setting up a criminal organization, and the investigator doesn't consider it necessary now to charge him under any other article but Article 256," he said.
In any case, Saakashvili will be treated as a suspect by the end of Wednesday, Lutsenko said. "Considering that Saakashvili fled yesterday and considering that he is at large and wanted now, a notice of suspicion will be duly forwarded to the place of his residence and to his defense team today, and it will actually be considered presented to him by the end of the day. Therefore, after the completion of these actions, Saakashvili will hold suspect status under Article 256, complicity with a criminal organization," he said.