Archive for May 19th, 2017

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Lutsenko names the next MPs to face immunity stripping votes

May 19, 2017

Prosecutor General Yuri Lutsenko has named the next 3 Verkhovna Rada MPs that he will seek, via Verkhovna Rada vote, to remove immunity from and thereafter prosecute.

They are Gennady Bobov (Art. 212, 366 para 1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine), Evgene Deyde (aka Dade) (Art. 368 para 2 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine ) and Andrei Lozov (Article 212, 368 para 2 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine).

Those acquainted with the politician class of Odessa will recognise the name of Eygene Dade and will not be at all surprised to see that the Prosecutor General wishes to proceed against him under Art 368 para 2:

“Art 368.2 – Taking a bribe of gross amount by an official who occupies a responsible position, or by a group of persons upon their prior conspiracy, or if repeated, or accompanied with requests of a bribe, –

shall be punishable by imprisonment for a term of five to ten years with the deprivation of the right to occupy certain positions or engage in certain activities for a term up to three years and forfeiture of property.”

Mr Dade is from Reni, Odessa Oblast, the son of a wealthy and influential man.  As is the want of many such son’s of rich and influential fathers, wayward was his course.  The usual border town smuggling and rumoured sale of State property swirled around Evgene, appearances before the court and the interceding of an influential father was required.

Moving to Odessa, Mr Dade became a police investigator in the Survorov District where within, according to media at the time, he and other investigators engaged in several robberies, eventually getting caught, and appearing before Survorov court.  Jail, however, was not the outcome for Mr Dade – again a reader may presume thanks to a father’s influence.

Let not the exuberance of youth, or a wayward path colour his future or a readers perception too soon, for when EuroMaidan/The Revolution of Dignity began, Mr Dade readily headed to Kyiv to support the westward-looking Ukrainian movement (not least a reader may suspect, due to a “personal” family dislike for former-President Yanukovych).

Nevertheless some equally unkind rumours of corruption, unwarranted violence, and shop looting surrounding the Maidan “self defence” unit that Mr Dade eventually commanded also surfaced.  Mr Dade, who then went on to become part of the Kyiv-1 Battalion, also managed to be involved in the tragic events of 2nd May in Odessa too – though to what degree is subject to much speculation and little public evidence.

Whatever the case, by October 2014 Mr Dade became a parliamentarian for the People’s Front, apparently cosseted under the protective wings of both Arsen Avakov and former MP Mykola Martynenko.  Perhaps as a result Mr Dade and his former Kyiv-1 Battalion chums are also believed to be involved in several “raids” on commercial interests (Hotel Lybid for example) and other acts on behalf of Mr Martynenko.

Mr Dade was no lover of Misha Saakashvili – as a reader would expect for somebody under an Avakov-Martinenko umbrella (for neither like Misha).  That said Mr Dade has a reasonable, or at least working relationship with Odessa MP Sergei Kivalov who was also no fanboy of the then Governor.  Whomever, of course Mr Dade is somewhat malleable material for such old hands, and thus Mr Dade was active in the toppling of “team Saakashvili”.

Malleable however, does not mean naive.

Together with Irina Suslova, Mr Dade managed to gain a reputation for selling both his parliamentary vote and his parliamentary lobbying, at one time with text messages displaying such bargaining floated around the internet and within the media.

Thus it is no surprise to see Mr Dade now subject to Yuri Lutsenko’s attention for corruption and bribery.

If his immunity be removed and he eventually leave the Verkhovna Rada, he will be of little loss to the tapestry of Ukrainian politics – thus far during 2017 Mr Dade has bothered to vote 58 times from 1312 votes (which does not make him the MP that has voted the least from Odessa – Messrs Matvychuk (4 votes), and Klimov (31 votes) have managed to vote on fewer occasions).

Grim as this read may be, Mr Dade and his parliamentary fate is not the point of this entry.  Whether or not Mr Dade will be stripped of his immunity and face due process for corruption and criminality remains to be seen.

Whatever the case, criminality and corruption are not treason – and it is the absence of another MP from Odessa upon the Prosecutor General’s list for immunity stripping that continues to catch the eye.

On 23rd September 2016, PG Lutsenko announced that within the next week he would be seeking the removal of Mykola Skoryk’s immunity.

When Governor of Odessa under President Yanukovych, Mr Skoryk on 19th February 2014 is strongly believed to have arranged the beating of  about 20 journalists, national and local, from across all political biases, who were covering a small “EuroMaidan” protest outside the Oblast Administration building, when about 150 men in helmets carrying baseball bats set upon them.  Naturally there were injuries and broken equipment belonging to the various media outlets.

Mr Skoryk and the then Deputy Chairman are believed responsible – and his co-conspirator has indeed been arrested (though as usual no court progress is visible).

On 3rd March 2014 when Novorossiya was briefly en vogue, per the Glazyev tapes, Mykola Skoryk convened an extraordinary session of the Oblast Rada with the intent of separating Odessa from the control of Kyiv (and a reader is well aware of what would have followed).  Fortunately that vote failed convincingly, thus closing the political avenues for such Kremlin machinations.

Once replaced as Governor, and prior to his election on the Oppo Block list to the Verkhovna Rada, Mr Skoryk was also apparently involved in the behind the curtain events leading up to the 2nd May tragedy in Odessa (though to be fair it is unlikely he foresaw the eventual outcome).

Other Verkhovna Rada parliamentarians have officially requested Mr Skoryk be investigated.

As of the time of writing, despite the 23rd September 2016 statement of Yuri Lutsenko, no attempt has been made to strip Mykola Skoryk of his MPs immunity, despite all the above.  That PG Lutsenko would make such a statement in September 2016 would infer that he had sufficient evidence to do what prosecutors do at that time.  We are to assume that now he doesn’t?

Why then is not an allegedly corrupt and criminal Mr Dade not accompanied by fellow Odessite MP Mykola Skoryk upon this list of MPs?

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