Judges who made decision on PrivatBank asking to open case against president, justice minister, NBU head
Judges of a panel, which made a decision on declaring unlawful the nationalization of PrivatBank, has appealed to Chairman of the High Council of Justice claiming that there is interference in fulfilling their duties. They also appealed to heads of the Prosecutor General's Office of Ukraine and the State Bureau of Investigations (SBI) regarding a crime committed, the press service of Kyiv's district administrative court has reported.
"The judges ask to start a pretrial investigation against the head of state, the minister of justice and the governor of the NBU [the National Bank of Ukraine], by entering relevant information into the unified register of pretrial investigations, according to the results of which the guilty persons will be brought to criminal responsibility. According to the judges, in their statements, the leadership of the state commenting illegal the nationalization of PrivatBank, made statements that are a direct threat to the judicial system of Ukraine, an encroachment on its independence and impartiality," the judges said.
The judges believe that such actions of the president, the heads of the National Bank and the Ministry of Justice were made to pressure the composition of the court and have signs of a crime under Part 2 of Article 376 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (interference with activity of judicial authorities for the purpose of preventing them from performance of their official duties or obtaining an unlawful judgment through abuse of office).
In addition, the judges of the panel are convinced that the actions of the authorities are related to the crime under Part 1 of Article 109 of the Criminal Code, "because in fact they are aimed at usurping the judicial branch of power, establishing total control over it in order to subordinate one's own will, which directly contradicts principles enshrined in the Constitution of Ukraine."
The judges believe that the statements of top officials were aimed at , in particular, appealing to the High Qualification Commission of Judges of Ukraine without proper legal grounds, since they do not have such powers by law. The judges believe that these actions contain elements of a crime under Part 2 of Article 364 of the Criminal Code, in particular, interference with activity of judicial authorities for the purpose of preventing them from performance of their official duties or obtaining an unlawful judgment through abuse of office.
The judges also believe that in commenting on the decision of the judges, the executive and legislative authorities "should avoid criticism that could undermine the independence of the judiciary or public trust in it." "They should also avoid actions that could cast doubt on their desire to comply with the decision of the judges, unless they intend to appeal," the judges said.
In their statements to the High Council of Justice, the judges are asking to take real measures to protect them from the actions of the state leadership and to avoid repeating such cases in the future by applying to the SBI with a statement about the crime committed by President Petro Poroshenko, Justice Minister Pavlo Petrenko and Governor of the National Bank Yakiv Smolii, and asking the parliament to initiate the impeachment procedure of the incumbent president.
In addition, the judges asked the High Council of Justice to appeal to the High Qualification Commission of Judges about the inadmissibility of assessing the judges of the district administrative court of Kyiv in the presence of a conflict of interest "in connection with the direct criminal instruction of President Petro Poroshenko to reload this court," the press service of Kyiv's district administrative court reported.