Ukrainian law

Legal news in Ukraine: the sentence for Viktor Yanukovych, the Law on Mine Action came into force, the program for the rehabilitation of juvenile offenders, amendments to the Constitution, legalization of alimony payers’ wages

27.01.2019 / 18:31

Legal news in Ukraine:  the sentence for Viktor Yanukovych, the Law on Mine Action came into force, the program for the rehabilitation of juvenile offenders, amendments to the Constitution, legalization of alimony payers’ wages

Obolonsky district court sentenced Viktor Yanukovych to 13 years imprisonment

Obolonsky District Court of Kiev sentenced former President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych to 13 years imprisonment for state treason and aiding in an aggressive war against Ukraine by the Russian Federation.

The decision was announced January 24, 2019, by the College of Judges of the Obolonsky Court, headed by Vladislav Ninewatz.

«Yanukovych Viktor Fedorovich admitted guilty of committing crimes in accordance with Articles Part 1 of Art. 111, part 5 of Art. 27, part 2 of Art. 437 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine and to impose a punishment under Part 1 of Art. 111 in the form of 13 years of imprisonment, under Part 5 of Art. 27 and Part 2 of Art. 437 in the form of 12 years imprisonment. And on the basis of art. 70 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine on the totality of crimes and absorption of a more severe punishment by a less severe one, to impose a punishment in the form of 13 years of imprisonment», the presiding judge said.

Also, the court acquitted Yanukovych on charges of encroachment on the territorial integrity of Ukraine. That is, the prosecution did not prove that the ex-president knew about Russia’s plans to seize the Crimea.

It should be noted that the criminal proceedings against Yanukovych were considered in absentia, since the accused is in the territory of the Russian Federation.

Yanukovych’s defense said that he would appeal the decision. At the same time, former Justice Minister Oleksandr Lavrynovych believes that the process of appealing a sentence in Ukraine may last for more than a year.

The Law on Mine Action in Ukraine came into force

On January 25, 2019, the Law of Ukraine «On Mine Action in Ukraine» came into force.

The legislation stipulates that Ukraine has national standards in the field of mine action, which are developed taking into account the provisions of the international standards for the mine acction approved by the United Nations Mine Action Service.

The main components of mine action in Ukraine are the inspection of the territory for the presence of explosive objects within it, marking and drawing maps of territories contaminated and (or) allegedly contaminated with explosive objects; clearing of this territory, preparation of documentation on the results of mine work; disposal of surplus ammunition, ammunition that is unsuitable for further use and storage, and assistance to victims, and the implementation of measures for their rehabilitation.

Assistance to injured persons from explosive objects will include medical, psychological, professional and social assistance.

According to the document, the Commission on Accreditation of Mine Action Operators is being set up. The Commission will be held the meeting at least once a month.

The Commission will consider applications for accreditation of multinational operators and issue or refuse to issue certificates of appropriate accreditation and will verify the compliance of operators with the requirements.

In addition, the Anti-Mine Action Center and the Mine Action Quality Control Inspectorate are foreseen.

For specialists in the field of mine action, there is a compulsory life and health insurance – for the period of their participation in the performance of such work.

The operator of a mine action before commencement of a multinational activity is obliged to conclude an insurance contract of civil liability for the period of the minting activity in a specified area and for 10 years after its termination.

The minimum amount of the insured amount under the civil liability insurance agreement is 250 sizes of the minimum wage. The amount of compensation for damage is determined by agreement of the parties or by court.

A new rehabilitation program for juvenile offenders has been launched in Ukraine

Justice Minister Pavel Petrenko and Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko signed an order to launch a pilot project «Recovery program for minors who are suspected of committing a crime».

It will operate in Donetsk, Lviv, Luhansk, Mykolaiv, Odesa and Kharkiv regions at the first stage.

The project suggests that children who first committed a crime of light or moderate gravity will be able to go through the recovery program instead of prosecution and avoid punishment.

The prosecutor will be able to offer a minor, who was accused of committing minor crimes for the first time, undergo a recovery procedure. That is – to reconcile with the victims with the participation of the free legal aid lawyer, who will act as an intermediary.

The procedure provides that the accused acknowledges his guilt, reimburses the damage to the victim and undergoes a recovery procedure. This procedure involves classes with a psychologist, trainings and work with mentors.

The Minister of Justice reminded that the ministry, together with partners, already has a successful experience in launching a probation system for juveniles who have received court sentences.

The government will prepare decentralization amendments to the Constitution

The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine initiates a transition to a new stage of decentralization reform and will prepare appropriate amendments to the Constitution of Ukraine, stated Prime Minister of Ukraine Volodymyr Hroisman.

According to the head of the government, during the first stage of the reform (2014-2019) in Ukraine were formed 876 capable communities and 1.5 million hectares of agricultural land were transferred to the community’s property.

Among the new tasks is to approve the new territorial basis of the country –100 districts and 1600-1800 communities, to consolidate the financial self-sufficiency of local self-government, to form an effective system of governance, to streamline the system of state control, and to avoid duplication of functions.

The Head of Government noted that the government’s vision for further decentralization will be formulated in the proposals for amendments to the Constitution of Ukraine.

The Ministry of Justice will deal with the legalization of alimony payers’ wages

The Ministry of Justice signed two Memorandums of Cooperation with the State Employment Service and the State Service of Ukraine for Labor, which will ensure further improvement of the alimony repayment’ rates.

The first of the signed documents will ensure the exchange of information on vacancies throughout Ukraine with the State Employment Service. Minister of Justice Pavel Petrenko said that now more than 108 thousand debtors have no work, no housing, no property.

«We will offer debtors voluntary employment. If they do not want to work and earn their own income in order to fulfill their duty to children, we will direct them to work through a tool of socially useful work», the Minister of Justice noted.

The second memorandum approaches another solution of this problem – through the legalization of the work of those who pay alimony.

«Over the past year, we received about 10 thousand complaints from parents living with children that the debtors work informally and receive salary in envelopes. In this way, they not only evade the obligation to pay alimony, but also do not pay taxes, which is also a violation of Ukrainian legislation», – said Pavel Petrenko.

The Ministry of Justice will provide information on cases of illegal receipt of funds from employers to the State Service for Labor.

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