Ukrainian court passes first sentences under war crimes law against former Crimean security officials

28 December 2022, 04:11 PM
The perpetrators were sentenced in absentia to 9 and 10 years for torturing the activist (Photo:Prosecutor's Office)

The perpetrators were sentenced in absentia to 9 and 10 years for torturing the activist (Photo:Prosecutor's Office)

Two former members of the Crimean department of Ukraine’s SBU security service have been sentenced in absentia to 9 and 10 years in prison for kidnapping and torturing Euromaidan activist Oleksandr Kostenko, the Crimean Prosecutor-General’s office reported Dec. 28.

This is the first sentence passed by a Ukrainian court under Article 438 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (violation of the laws and customs of war), the head of the Crimean Prosecutor-General’s office, Ihor Ponochevny, said.

According to court filings, following the occupation of Crimea by Russia in 2014, these SBU officials agreed to cooperate with Russian occupation authorities and transferred to Russia’s FSB security service.

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At the beginning of 2015, they illegally detained Kostenko, then threatened and tortured him  with electrical shocks. The former SBU officers were attempting to coerce Kotenko into confessing that he was responsible for inflicting injuries on a Berkut riot police officer in Kyiv during the Euromaidan protests.

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