Human rights activists claim that only a tribunal established by law may try and review cases. The National Anticorruption Bureau of Ukraine and the Appeals Chamber of the High Anticorruption Court of Ukraine have been inappropriately assisting in the reopening of a criminal investigation while demonstrating overt bias and flagrantly trampling the requirements of the Code of Criminal Procedure of Ukraine, thereby compromising the fundamental principles of law and undermining the foundations of Ukraine’s system of justice.

This statement was made by the Kharkiv Human Rights Group in an open letter to the President of the Appeals Chamber of HACCU and NABU Director Sytnyk, as reported by Ukrainian News.  The Kharkiv Human Rights Group argues that the ruling of the Pechersk District Court of Kiev City that found unlawful the reopening of a case previously closed for lack of evidence of a criminal offence against the former owner of VAB Bank, Oleg Bakhmatyuk, may not be appealed by NABU, which was not a party to the relevant proceedings. The human rights activists are calling on the leadership of the National Anticorruption Bureau of Ukraine and judges of the Appeals Chamber of the High Anticorruption Court of Ukraine to stop breaking the law by refusing to comply with a final court order. Such actions undermine the foundations of the system of justice in Ukraine and the fundamental principles of law. The authority to try and review cases rests exclusively with a ‘tribunal established by law’. Only eligible parties may lodge an appeal. The actions of NABU and HACCU compromise the principle of legal certainty, said the human rights activists in the letter. We have been watching closely the actions of government authorities in the criminal proceedings in question, and we’ll be analysing them and keeping the public informed if further violations occur of human rights, principles of law or applicable legislation of Ukraine. The human rights activists argue that only a tribunal established by law may try and review cases, while only eligible parties have the right to file an appeal. Actions by NABU and HACCU are also unlawful in that they contradict the principle of legal certainty. The Pechersk District Court of Kiev City ruled earlier to overturn as unlawful the decision of the former first deputy governor Vitaliy Kasko to reopen the criminal case against the owner of the agricultural company Ukrlandfarming, Oleg Bakhmatyuk. The ruling is final and not subject to appeal, NABU and SAPO have, however, refused to comply with it.