Brother for brother: Judge clan does not surrender its judges
Late winter evening. An SBU officer took me to his office in Lviv's "tallest building." He jokes - so high that Kolyma is visible. Former Dzerzhinsky Street. Former KGB building.
(SBU in the Lviv region)
The officer is thirty, short-cropped, with a gold chain around his neck. You will not distinguish from a bandit. Barbed look, red eyes. He is drinking for the third day. The reason is a birthday and a successful special operation.
I was prepareing material about werewolves, so I came for information.
“Why do you need those cops,” the SBU officer is indignant. - Judges should be done. About the judges. That's where big money goes. "
He knows what he is saying. A few days ago a judge Igor Hanych was convicted in Lviv. Bribe of 400 thousand.
"I took the judge on hot," says an SBU employee. - About they have to be done. And you are cops and cops. "
Ok. About judges - so about judges.
… Four years have passed. I never saw this officer again. And his drunken triumph seems to have been defeated today. Judge Igor Hanych still wears a mantle.
Andrei Sivchuk - from the Lutsk City Court of Volyn - justified his colleague at first. Subsequently, this sentence was overturned on appeal by the prosecutor's office. And still the case is walking the courts.
Meanwhile, Igor Hanych is living well. For the fourth year, he has not heard the case - expelled by the High Council of Justice. Therefore, it does not fulfill its direct responsibilities.
Removed and not released. And for his judicial inaction, he has already received from our pockets almost one million hryvnias salaries and allowances.
Judge Andriy Sivchuk, who acquitted Judge Hanych, continues to carry out the law quietly. In a word - the triumph of truth and justice. Lustration is in full swing.
… “Judges are a big friendly family that will never eat each other,” says a police officer of the Lviv militia department. We are talking about a similar case - Judge Leonid Rak from Chervonograd.
He took the money from the man from currency office. It ruled retroactively - lest the prosecutor's office have time to challenge it. He confiscated only a fraction of the withdrawn funds, most of them by his decision returned. But the currencyman was not thankful. He handed over the judge to law enforcement officers.
(Leonid Rak, Judge of the Chervonograd City Court of Lviv Region)
But unlike Hanych, the police did not withdraw the money from Rak. Because they were going higher, they wanted to catch an organized group. After receiving bribes, Rak also for a couple of hundred greens undertook to be the mediator and to promote that his colleague Stepan Meleshko made the necessary resolution in a similar case of the same currencyman.
(Stepan Meleshko, Head of Chervonograd City Court of Lviv Region)
But when police officers also worked on the case of Judge Meleshko - receiving permits to search his office and premises, the information leaked.
As a result, only Rak was taken. Meleshko went to the brink. Like, the first time he hears about any arrangements.
The judge from the Kovel district court of Volyn Ivanna Okosten acquitted Rak.
(Ivanna Okosten, Judge of Kovel City Court of Volyn Region)
However, she was not understood in the Volyn Court of Appeal and the sentence was overturned. The case, like the case of Hanych, goes on in the courts. Cancer, like his colleague Hanych from Lviv, was expelled. But he receives a salary. His inactivity has already poured out to taxpayers at almost UAH 600,000.
By the way, already during the lustration, Judge Stepan Meleshko was elected chairman of the same Chervonograd city court of Lviv region. In a word, the purification of power and the restoration of confidence in the court.
… I am looking at the Organized Crime Control Department employee and recall a conversation with an SBU employee. Dejavu. The man of the same complex - weighing one hundred kilograms. Short haircut, gold chain, barbed look. He is beyond thirty and has more than one judge behind him. He also took Vladimir Kachmar.
(Vladimir Kachmar, now Judge of Lviv Administrative Court of Appeal)
A local man wrote a statement about this judge from Drohobych. Like, the judge and the local lawyer Andriy Luchkiv demand a bribe for the right decision.
The operation also failed. The information leaked again.
… “Tell us please. How should we work,” smiles Denis Gusashvili. Until recently, he directed the Lviv Organized Crime Control Department.
"We have been developing a judge for many months and ultimately failing."
Denis Gusashvili is more like a psychologist. The voice is calm and balanced, the appearance of a provincial teacher. Not tall, not fat, modestly dressed. If you meet him on the street, you will think that "nerd". And you're wrong.
(Denis Gusashvili, former head of the Organized Crime Control Unit of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in the Lviv region)
Gusashvili all his life is in the police. The convicts and detainees, with his involvement and leadership of criminals, could fill more than one prison.
“You understand that in order for everything to be legal, we need to get a court authorization to conduct operational activities. That is, to capture the requirements of bribe, video. Without the court's permission, it's nothing. This is not proof. And where do we get it? In the judge. Under the new CCP - at the location of the court. That is in the Lviv region.
The chairman, the judge who rendered it, the assistant, the secretary, the office know about the court ruling. And we have a leak.
Further - more. We have recorded how one or the other judge took the money. A separate court permit is required to search his office, home, car. In the same region, ”Gusashvili describe.
… When the victim handed money to the lawyer, Andriy Luchkiv went to the Drohobych court to resolve the issue. At the same time, police officers sought permission to search Judge Kachmar's office and his premises.
And when they had the document in their hands, another group of operatives already prepared to take the judge. But he didn't take the money from his lawyer. Because an angry Andrew Luchkiv was already running out of court and throwing dollars into the victim's face.
(Andrey Luchkiv, lawyer)
He later told investigators that he had deceived the victim. He wanted to take money, and he didn't want to give any dollars to the judge.
Judge Kachmar supported this version before prosecutors. Like, for the first time, he hears about some arrangement. The investigator believed and denied initiating a criminal case against a judge. Luchkiv's lawyer was sentenced to a fine of UAH 800. And he continues to work fruitfully in law. For example, he is now a court lawyer and defends Judge Kachmar's father.
… “The judge personally, mostly does not take money. It acts through intermediaries, ”Gusashvili says. "They can be lawyers, or other parties to the process."
The judge denies, the lawyer denies, the information leaked, the dollars were not withdrawn from the employee of Themis. Kachmar's criminal case was dismissed.
That is not the case with Hanych. He was accused there of demanding and receiving from lawyer Andrey Frusenko 400 thousand hryvnias. Hidden video was from the judge's office, money was seized. Moreover, not only the victim insists that Judge Hanych demanded and received a bribe. This was confirmed by the mediator himself - lawyer Frusenko.
After visiting a justice servant, he did not have time to depart far from Lviv Railway Court - Alpha detained him. But, unlike the lawyer Luchkiv, Frusenko handed over Judge Hanych. By the way, he did not get behind the bars, the case against the lawyer was closed - after the expiration of the statute of limitations.
By the way, both Rak, Hanych, and Kachmar firmly stand on that one that these were all planned provocations by law enforcement. And when I tried to get comments from them, they had a clear line of answers. These are custom materials, you have been paid for them, you are a corrupt journalist.
… “You are doing everything to blacken me, as a judge and to blacken my family. And to blacken all the other judges. Your program is directed at that and that is why you are persecuting me, ”Judge Vasily Teniukh screams at the whole hallway of the Lviv Court of Appeal. For several minutes, Themis' servant tells me what our program is corrupt. It is a project of "Brother for brother" journalistic investigations on ZIK TV. We are shooting the fourth story about servants of the law.
(Vasily Teniukh, Judge of the Court of Appeal of Lviv Oblast)
"I was right," Tenuch shouts. And I remember his colleague from the criminal chamber of the same court, Vasily Galin. A few weeks ago, we caught him under the house.
"I am monitoring about whom you have requested and learned information. And if it is confirmed to me that the order went from the person I think of…, ”Vasily Galin makes a meaningful pause.
It seems to me that for the judges hold some workshops on how to properly communicate with journalists.
Here I am showing Teniukh documents that he has taken a huge apartment to the Lviv community.
Incidentally, one was voluntarily provided to him by the state. But he quickly sold it, registered by himself in the village to his sister and began to sue the Lviv City Executive Committee - they say he has no place to live.
I show him all the documents, decisions, excerpts - and he tells me: “That is not true. It is the denigration of my honest name.
I show Vasily Galin his lawsuit in the City Executive Committee - about securing his apartment and seizing her. And he says - “You were ordered material, nothing like that - I did not sue. I only filed a lawsuit.
(Vasyl Galyn, Judge of the Court of Appeal of Lviv Oblast)
Judges are able to provide themselves with housing. Galin, Tenuch. After receiving one apartment from the state, they later sued the Lviv community for another apartment.
Judge Vasily Ulitsky did not run away from them either. If you don't know, in the past he was the deputy of Igor Zvarych.
Ulytsky generally sentenced more than one hundred square meters in the center of Lviv. Within a few months, they were sold for about one hundred and fifty thousand dollars. It is interesting that the famous Lviv businessman Alexei Kurilishin was forced to take out a loan in order to buy this apartment. Not like, but 150 thousand green!
(Vasyl Ulitsky, now Judge of Lviv Administrative Court of Appeal)
And now the owner of the first apartment of a judge from the state is Mykola Ulitsky. Son of a servant of the Law. Now a lawyer.
… “They have a circular bail there. Today you will do something for me, tomorrow I will do something for you, "- former Lviv Mayor Lubomir Bunyak throws thunder and lightning.
(Lubomir Bunyak, former mayor of Lviv)
He says the three rooms that Tenuch has condemned wanted to provide a large mother. She had nine children. They did lessons on stairwells.
But the court said its strong word. In the end, Judges Ulitsky and Teniuk received decent housing. And Judge Mikhail Volynets, who also ruled in their favor, was later elected to the same Court of Appeal in Lviv.
(Mykhailo Volynets, now Judge of the Court of Appeal of Lviv Oblast)
Ulitsky also went up. He works at the Lviv Administrative Court of Appeal. Vladimir Kachmar also works here. He moved here from Drohobych in a few months, after the unsuccessful special operation of the Organized Crime Control Department.
… “You didn't let me into the office,” Judge Ivanna Okosten shouts. -
- Here is the judicial police, she saw everything. You didn't let me pass, - the judge foams.
And what did I ask? Only about the justification for Judge Rak. And she to me: about the basic principles of journalism, about the high calling to carry truth and justice, about the formation of opinion in society ...
And I was reminded of last year's meeting with my classmate. Assistant Judge. However, he has already passed the exam for a judge, so as everything goes according to plan, he will soon put on his mantle. He said something similar to Judge Okosten said.
"It's all the journalists' fault," he said. - You are to blame for the way society treats judges! Because you form a negative opinion about the court. ”
There was no discussion as well as a constructive conversation. The classmate spoke confidently and peremptorily. Like, there is only one truth - and it is ours, the judge's.
“The judges are not guilty of anything, we live in such a society. We are just like everyone else. It is all people's fault - those who give bribes. And to the judges: what they gave him - he took. It's not our fault, it's all the people who give bribes.
But there is no such thing as a judge say white if it is black. ”
Well, maybe not, he is more visible, I think today, turning the next page of Igor Zvarych's book. Former chairman of the Lviv Administrative Court of Appeal, sentenced to 10 years.
So, my classmate should read the books of this judge. The textbook there tells us directly about Lviv cuisine of people in robes. White and black.
By the way, Zvarych was convicted of demanding, taking bribes. Whether he is guilty or not is another question. There is a second point - the court's verdict indicates who gave him bribes. There is little talk about this for some reason. Like what all those people got out of the push. And they were not punished.
Thus, according to the verdict, the judge Olena Melnychuk gave a bribe to Zvarych. At that time, she was a colleague of the court mentioned Hanych. She worked at the Lviv Zaliznychnyi Court.
She confessed. And you know what's up with her? She is gone up. He works at the Court of Appeal of Lviv Region.
Her daughter - Irina Melnychuk - is also a judge. But she does justice in Pustomytivs'k court in Lviv region.
… “But there is no such thing as a judge say white if it is black ”- my classmate insisted.
But Judge Olena Melnichuk confessed that she had given a bribe to Zvarych for this.
And in the case, by the way, Olena Skremeta, an assistant judge of the Commercial Court of Lviv region, passed by. She confessed to bribing Judge Zvarych.
She conveyed through her acquaintance Lyudmila Kolodko - an adviser to a judge of the Lviv Administrative Court of Appeal. Ms. Kolodko also confessed this and told everything like in confession.
So, Olena Scrametta continues to help the judges enforce the law. Now she heads the department of study and synthesis of case law of the Commercial Court of Lviv region. Business cases are the most money. Moreover, she has already passed the exam for a judge. Perhaps she is trying onthe mantle .
Lyudmila Kolodko continues to work as an Assistant Judge in the Lviv Administrative Court of Appeal.
And I to the fact that they passed a bribe for making the right decision in the tax dispute with OJSC “Lvivoblenergo”. It was said that the company underpaid the budget of 5 and a half million hryvnias.
And the bribe should be a guarantee that it will not pay extra. That is, the Ukrainian treasury will not receive huge sums. Isn't that black on white?
… When the judges are convicted, they shout as one: this is all the provocations of the police.
I speak to the judges - they say that I corrupt by SBU. Like, they order me materials. I will disappoint them ...
… “All the judges are standing in the SBU. - smiles a former employee of the Organized Crime Control Department. - They pay for the "roof" of the SBU. That's why we cops can't do anything. "
But they will not be able to. The Organized Crime Management was liquidated. Because that it duplicates the functions of the special unit of fight against corruption and organized crime of the Security Service of Ukraine. So now judges should be wary only the SBU .
… “We designed Judge Jala. From Mostyskiy court, - reports the former Organized Crime Control Department. - Such a shock in our operas was long ago.
To understand, Mostysky district in Lviv region is border with Poland. Smuggling cases in the local court are a common occurrence. In a word - a bread place.
The lawyer should transfer injured's money to judge Sergei Jala. All according to the standard scheme - the lawyer went to court with a visit to the judge. At the same time, another group of operatives, in another judge, was granted a search warrant. When the document was in the hands of the police and the lawyer was already standing in the clear eyes of Mr Jala, the judge's phone was rang. With a white face, he asked the lawyer to wait a few minutes in the hallway.
The Organized Crime Control Department was also awaiting near court. No money transfer occurred.
“And here in a few cars people in plain clothes drive up. They go to court and bring Judge Jalu out. Many faces resemble SBU employees.
We do not understand what is happening. The machines are heading for Kiev. We are after them.
As a result, they reached the Prosecutor General's Office. Jala quickly ran there and wrote a statement. He demanded a bribe, wanted to take it, and at the last moment realized that he was committing a crime. Therefore, he voluntarily refused such, ”the police operative recalls.
Painting - oil. By law, this is called "effective remorse." And the criminal case that was opened by the Prosecutor General's Office is subject to closure.
(Sergiy Dzhala, Judge of Mostysky District Court of Lviv Region)
"I still remember today the sly grin of Judge Jala and the people in the staff who accompanied him," he concludes.
We have lustration in our country, trust in judges is restored. Their checks are underway.
Well. Here, the Supreme Qualifications Commission of Judges of Ukraine proposes to appoint Judge Sergiy Jal for an indefinite term. Deputies of the Verkhovna Rada will vote soon. For him to go on promotion ...
… “You know, now we only switch to the "Big Figures". Something so small - we are not interested - said me proudly a few years ago, Vasyl Bakhmatsky, the head of the special unit on fight against corruption and organized crime and on the deputy head of the SBU of Lviv region. -
"Our task is to expose the "Big Fish".
Yes, clearly, "Big Fish" - I remember to myself that conversation. They took Zvarych, took Hanych - and for a few years they do not catch judges in Lviv region. And how the fellow in the mantle get caught by the police rivals? So how's Jala? And what we're talking about, is probably not the Big Fish. The SBU knows what to do.
… What am I about? And about lustration. Judge of the Lviv Regional Administrative Court Olena Krutko is also waiting for a promotion. The people's deputies have to decide whether to give mantle for life.
She was one of the first in Ukraine, at the dawn of the Dignity Revolution, to preside over a decision that restricted the right to peaceful assembly of citizens in Lviv.
(Olena Krutko, judge of the Lviv District Administrative Court)
Judge Krutko insists she is not guilty. Like, the peaceful event did not prohibit, but only did not allow to set up tents in Lviv Euromaidan.
Her position is supported by MP Yuriy Macedon. In the past, he was a SBU employee, and now he is very much promoting himself in the lustration of judges, and his direct involvement in it. Co-chairman of the Judicial Subcommittee of the Verkhovna Rada Yuriy Macedon is convinced: “Olena Krutko did not forbid peaceful assembly”.
(Yuriy Macedon, Member of Parliament, Co-chair of the Judge Subcommittee)
He is convinced of this today.
Although some time before, he insisted on the opposite. And he did everything to ensure that materials on Judge Krutko did not go to the Verkhovna Rada.
But this is the case: he had one conviction, and then he changed his mind dramatically, and he said that white is black. It is clear. I wonder after what? Maybe he talked to Ms Krutko's mother. With Nina Gerasymchuk, who is the chairman of the Belogorsk court in Khmelnytskyi. She probably opened his eyes to values in judges family.
(Nina Gerasymchuk, Head of the Belogorsk District Court of Khmelnytskyi Region)
… “After the people who give bribes to the judges, you are the second in the second place: journalists, - I remember talking to my classmate. -
- Why do you form a negative opinion about the judges? -
- And what are we not doing right? -
- But the positive materials should do. And you are all corruption and bribery. -
- And what, isn't it? Do we have a fair trial? -
"You're a fool?" I tell you - the judges are mortal, they are tempted to get rich, they are given and they take. -
- Well, I understand. Come on, -
- Come on, congratulate you wife. -
And they dispersed. They are on different sides of the barricades.