Judges-candidates to the Supreme Court and their appraiser attended Heletey’s anniversary together – Radio Liberty
The journalists of the investigating programme “Schemes” spotted several candidates to the new Supreme Court accompanied by the member of the High Council of Justice, which will later decide competitors’ fate for that position.
It was celebration of anniversary of Valeriy Heletey, Chief of Administration of State Guard. Other high-ranking officials were also present there. Experts point out the obvious conflict of interests.
President of the Supreme Court Yaroslav Romaniuk, President of the Supreme Economic Court Bohdan Lvov and President of the High Specialized Court of Ukraine for Civil and Criminal Cases Borys Hulko together attended anniversary of Valeriy Heletey, Chief of Administration of State Guard, on August, 28. Their arrival was recorded by the journalists of the TV programme “Schemes” (joint project of Radio Liberty and “UA:Pershyi” TV channel).
The three judges came to the House of Official Receptions in Kyiv (22, Hrushevskoho Street) at the same time, about 7pm, accompanied by guards.
The car, used by the President of the Supreme Court Yaroslav Romaniuk, was Mercedes s500 with the registration plate AA0001BC. The “BC” series is reserved for the Supreme Court, according to the media reports. Apparently, judge Romaniuk was using the service car for his personal needs in order to attend the private banquet.
The judges entered the hall together. Yaroslav Romaniuk holding bouquet of roses, Bohdan Lvov’s assistant carrying a big green wrapped box behind him.
Bohdan Lvov and Borys Hulko are candidates for the positions of the new Supreme Court judges. Yaroslav Romaniuk is the one their careers depend on, as he is member of the High Council of Justice, responsible for appraising Hulko and Lvov and their selection to the new Supreme Court.
Candidate to the new Supreme Court Bohdan Lvov is one of thirty crooked finalists to the court, as he got a negative review from the Public Integrity Council.
The other candidate, Borys Hulko, had been spotted by the “Schemes” earlier, when he visited the President’s Administration. “It’s one of my responsibilities – to represent the court in all state bodies and the like”, – he then told the “Schemes”.
Their appraiser – member of the High Council of Justice Yaroslav Romaniuk – during the Revolution of Dignity publicly approved of the so-called “dictatorship laws” of January 16.
According to the schedule of the High Council of Justice, application of Bohdan Lvov was reviewed on September 20, 2017, Borys Hulko’s – on September 15, 2017. The results will come out around the end of September.
The Public Integrity Council coordinator Vitaliy Tytych considers the judges’ participation in that celebration to be in conflict with the Bangalore Principles of Judicial Conduct, ratified by the Resolution of the UN Economic and Social Council.
According to the Bangalore principles, in order to comply with the value “Independence”, “a judge shall not only be free from inappropriate connections with, and influence by, the executive and legislative branches of government, but must also appear to a reasonable observer to be free therefrom”. Participation of the candidates – acting judges at that – in that “celebration” apparently entailed numerous informal contacts with various authorities. Informal contacts of Lvov and Hulko – candidates to the Supreme Court – with Romaniuk – member of the High Council of Justice – do not look so good from the point of view of anti-corruption legislature. These candidates got a negative review from the Public Integrity Council, and now Romaniuk is the one who is going to decide their fate in the competition for the position”, – said Vitaliy Tytych.
Head of the Press-service department of the High Specialized Court of Ukraine for Civil and Criminal Cases Nila Martyniuk said that they would provide comment for the “Schemes” on the event in the near future. Press-service of the Supreme Economic Court first said, “there was nothing to comment on”, but then agreed to provide later a written reply.
Sergiy Andrushko, Maksym Savchuk, SCHEMES, Radio Liberty Radio Free Europe