Portnov subject of case involving state treason enabling occupation of Crimea
Ex-deputy head of the Presidential Administration under ex-President Viktor Yanukovych Andriy Portnov is a subject of a criminal case, in which the SBU State Security Service for Crimea is checking his participation in preparing documents enabling the Russian occupation of Crimea.
This information comes from a Kherson city court ruling of July 26 posted to the Unified Register of Court Decisions. It is based on a motion filed by a senior investigative criminologist of Ukraine's SBU's Directorate for Crimea, asking an investigative judge of Kherson city court to allow temporary access to materials of criminal case No. 22015160000 0000275. In that case, Russian presidential adviser Konstantin Zatulin is suspected of committing illegal acts in 2014 which infringed on the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, as well as planning, preparing, launching and conducting an aggressive war.
The motion was motivated by the fact that the investigative department of the SBU's Directorate for Crimea is carrying out a pretrial investigation into criminal proceeding No. 42018010000000022 of February 6, 2018, under Part 1 of Article 111 (high treason) of the Ukraine's Criminal Code. It was established during the pretrial investigation that the article, titled "A Crimean Supreme Council draft resolution at start of occupation was prepared by Portnov," contains information about his possible involvement in the preparation of the wording of the resolution, which was subsequently adopted to justify and provide a pretext for the temporary occupation of the peninsula.
"It follows from the media report that during the telephone conversation recorded by the Ukrainian intelligence service on March 1, 2014 [the key suspect in the case] informs about the need for Crimea's Supreme Council to adopt a resolution prepared by a Ukrainian lawyer, a former deputy head of the presidential administration, to reflect Crimea's position on signing the Association Agreement with the European Union," the ruling said.
In this regard, the investigative department of the SBU Directorate for Crimea sent a request to the Main Military Prosecutor's Office under the Prosecutor General's Office (PGO) to obtain copies of audio recordings of Zatulin's conversations with other persons, as well as copies of other materials that can confirm or disprove Portnov's involvement in criminal offenses.
The decision remains in force until August 26, 2019 and cannot be appealed.