Uranium enrichment: the case Martynenko leads to the half-life of the coalition

“Grey cardinal” of Ukrainian energy, the former people’s Deputy from “popular front” Mykola Martynenko was back under the scope of law enforcement. He was charged in the case of GP “VostGOK” where the end of 2015, it was held as a witness. The ex-MP accused of forming a criminal organization and assignment, waste of property or taking to them by abuse of official position. As a result of such action of GP damages in the amount of $17.28 million According to NABU, Martynenko could face 8 to 12 years of imprisonment. The evening of 20 April, the NAB and the ARS handed to Mykola Martynenko, the suspect and detained for 72 hours.

At the time of writing Solomensky regional court of Kiev to elect a measure of restraint ex-to the Deputy. The session began with 4-hour delay. Prosecutors are asking for 60 days with the right to make 300 million UAH pledge. Lawyers do not agree, called the detention illegal and hinted at bias of judge Alexander Bobrivnyk, which considered the case of the SFS head of the Roman Nasirov, and in principle, almost all petitions NABU and SAP. However, the request for recusal was rejected.

According to Martynenko colleagues, Ministers and MPs who came to court to support him and ready to take on bail, the case is politically motivated. Like, Mykola Martynenko voluntarily handed over the Deputy mandate in December 2015, not hidden and all that time cooperated with the investigation, and then he is detained. NABU explained that a year and a half, during which Martynenko was held as a witness in the case of GP “VostGOK” spent on gathering evidence – they sent 16 queries in 8 countries.

The history of the case. In late 2014 the number of Ukrainian and foreign mass media appeared information that in 2013 law enforcement authorities in Switzerland are investigating the case against Mykola Martynenko for bribery. First wrote about this Czech newspaper Pravo, then in the beginning of 2015 picked up by the German Deutsche Welle.

Before the scandal came in the fall of 2015 after the announcement by the people’s Deputy from BPP Sergey Leshchenko of documents that allegedly prove the involvement of Mykola Martynenko to corruption schemes. First Leshchenko, showing a letter signed by the speaker of the Prosecutor’s office of Switzerland Linda von Burg, said that Martynenko had received bribes for the contract for the Czech company that was to supply equipment for two nuclear power plants – Rivne and Zaporizhzhya NPP.

Mykola Martynenko and his colleagues in the popular front strongly denied allegations of corruption, calling Sergei Leshchenko “agent of the Kremlin” performing a political order. On 26 November 2015 in his blog on “Ukrainian truth” Sergey Leshchenko published documents and described the scheme as “rollback”, which allegedly received by the Panamanian company the then MP from NF Mykola Martynenko for promoting the sales and services of Czech companies in Ukraine.

“Panamanian company Martynenko Bradcrest Investments received into your account Commission from the contract between the state company Energoatom and the Czech plant “Skoda”. “Rollback” Martynenko was 15-20% of the supply of equipment to nuclear power plants. For the legalization of bribery, between a Skoda and the company Bradcrest in 2008 an agreement was concluded whereby the company Martynenko has taken the responsibility to promote the sale and service of “Skoda” on the Ukrainian market. Bradcrest had to ensure economic success, to provide “Skoda” all the information about the projects in the energy sector of Ukraine, to help “Skoda” in the negotiations. The size of “kickbacks” at the expense Martynenko in Switzerland amounted to 3 million 623 thousand euros in the Bank BNP Paribas and 2 million 777 thousand euros in the Bank Banque Hottinger & Cie” – he described the scheme in his blog Sergei Leshchenko.

After a series of mutual accusations of corruption and venality, Mykola Martynenko decides to hand over the Deputy mandate. “Given that the shocks are both on the government and authorities in General (then Arseniy Yatsenyuk was Prime Minister – Ed.) I make the decision on addition of Deputy powers and voluntarily waive parliamentary immunity”, – said Martynenko.

However later in December 2015 Ukrainian PGO confirmed that in conjunction with the representatives of law enforcement bodies of the Czech Republic (at the request of the Czech side) they interviewed Mykola Martynenko, which confirms the existence of a criminal investigation by the Czech office of the public Prosecutor against the former MP from NF. Then NABU has opened two criminal proceedings in which Mykola Martynenko to 20 April was held as a witness. The first schemes of “Energoatom” and “Skoda”, and the second procurement state enterprise “Eastern mining and processing plant” uranium concentrate from the Austrian joint stock companies, as in December 2015 was written by the Austrian press.

What incriminate Martynenko. Evening of April 20 Mykola Martynenko moved from the status of a witness, suspect status in the case of GP “VostGOK”. The former head of the parliamentary Committee on energy is charged with creating a criminal organization and assignment, waste of property or taking to them by abuse of official position. As a result of such action of GP damages in the amount of $17.28 million According to NABU, Martynenko could face 8 to 12 years of imprisonment.

“Martynenko was detained in order St. 208 criminal procedure code for 72 hours. Yesterday (20 April – Ed.) announced suspicion, prosecutors agreed the petition for election measures of restraint. The position of the Prosecutor’s office will ask the court about election of a preventive measure of detention for a period of 60 days with an alternative to bail in the sum of 300 million UAH”, – was explained yesterday to journalists the head of SAP Nazar Golodnitsky.

Nikolay Martynenko accusations called falsified at the direction of the Director of NABU Ukraine Artem Sytnik, and the case is political and not supported by any evidence.

Choose a measure of restraint Nikolay Martynenko in Solomenskiy district court of Kiev, though lawyers said that the detention is not lawful. “Yesterday (20 April – Ed.) he could not go to the detectives NAB, and no procedural action was not. All procedural steps were made tonight in SAP until 5 am. Already at 5 am we lawyers excuse my frankness started some nervous and said, “we must go, and you do the documents.” That is, all of this was done on my knees on the floor in a mad rush and bustle. Why for 1.5 years people are not properly prepared for the criminal case, which talked about every week, I do not understand,” he told reporters before the trial detainee’s lawyer Igor Cherezov.

To the court to support his colleague came to the Ministers of infrastructure Vladimir Omelian, education Liliya Hrynevych, youth and sport Igor Zhdanov (head of the interior Ministry Arsen Avakov was not) and a whole crew of deputies from the NF. They were outraged that the detained Mykola Martynenko illegally, they say, he’s not hiding from the investigation, went to all interviews, and most important, voluntarily surrendered the mandate, not to hide behind parliamentary immunity. Well and, certainly, the most interesting detail, which surprised not only associates Martynenko, but also journalists and experts – the judge, who was lucky enough to elect Martynenko measure. The selection of an independent automated system again fell on judge Alexander Bobrivnyk. The judge dismissed the head of the SFS of the Roman Nasirov.

The political consequences. Mykola Martynenko can rightly be called a political heavyweight. The MP of the last six convocations, the last four heading the Committee on energy. It is not only called the grey cardinal of the Ukrainian energy sector, but the Ukrainian political elite. One of the closest associates of former Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk, Mykola Martynenko financed the Maidan. And talking about it, not only his supporters but also people’s deputies from BPP.

“Martynenko was one of the main sponsors of the Maidan, and in the first stage, almost the only sponsor. He never never said that. And for good reason. Now many who otherwise would have treated him. Case Martynenko in the mass consciousness – this is war football fans. And the NAB business Martynenko is, above all, gain confidence. A few months ago nabity loudly detained the chief sanitary doctor (Sviatoslav Protas – Ed.) allegedly for a bribe. Recently, the case was closed. This example is only a small part parastasia. Now for many of NABOO’s boa, which looks at the rabbit. And Nasirov, and Martynenko – it is a system of intimidation. The courts will go a long time,” he wrote in his Facebook the people’s Deputy from BPP Vadim Denisenko.

Stood up for Martynenko and “radicals” called for a “random” election judges Bobrivnyk and unjustified detention. “I don’t know Martynenko guilty or not, but I do know that the assessment of evidence in any criminal proceedings shall give an impartial court. Emphasize impartial and not judge Bobrovnik, to which there are arguable claims of bribery, raiding and making biased decisions. Believe that to choose a measure of restraint Martynenko in the form of arrest, there is no reason for two reasons: Martynenko voluntarily renounced parliamentary immunity, adding parliamentary authority, Martynenko does not avoid the inquiry, leaving Ukraine constantly returns”, – wrote in Facebook the people’s Deputy from “Radical party” Ihor Mosiychuk was admitted.

All interested in the question, what will “people’s front”, if NABU and SAP will be able to prove the guilt of Mykola Martynenko in court? Whether in this case the PF to destabilize the situation and, for example, threaten to withdraw from the coalition? In NF site the “Today” assured that the ranks of the parliamentary majority “veterans” are not going to leave. At least until this decision of the faction was not. “For us national interests come first. I don’t think that because of this case, we must leave the coalition. But I think we should stop the practice when our investigative agencies PR on the detention of people whose guilt has not been proven and are not hiding from the investigation”, – said the “Today” people’s Deputy from NF Nikolay knyazhitsky.

And here opinions of analysts were divided. Some believe that “veterans” can raise the question about withdrawal from the coalition since the middle of may when it will resume the plenary session in the Verkhovna Rada. Earlier, in an interview with “Today,” political analyst Vitaly Kulik admitted the formation on the NF of two new political projects. “In the PF know that they will not take as many votes as he took NF (ordinary or early parliamentary elections – Ed.). But they will be quite noticeable for the formation of his own faction and doing his political games. Now their job is possible to find its position (including the case Martynenko, Ed.). If the positions are not stored if they are not able to make their people, then they go for re-election. It will be like the last weapon. They don’t swing. But while this room for maneuver”, – said Vitaly Kulik.

Completely opposite point of view is the political scientist Vadim Karasev. According to him, the PF is not profitable to leave the coalition, as in the case of early parliamentary elections, they can pass the Verkhovna Rada. “Even if NF will create new political projects, that they will be taken to Parliament? If they fall, because barely 5% gain. But one thing, when you have 81 seats, and the other when you have 20 people. I’m not talking about reformatting. Neither Andriy Parubiy at the head of the Parliament will not, nor Arsen Avakov headed the interior Ministry nor Pavel Petrenko, the Ministry of justice…”, – said the “Today” Vadim Karasev.