New Draft Law on Anti-Corruption Court is Registered in the Parliament

On May 31 MP Sergiy Alekseev (Poroshenko bloc) introduced in rada draft law  #6529 on anticorruption specialization of judges in ordinary courts.

The draft law prescribes:

  • abolishment of provision on creation of the High anticorruption court;
  • establishment of mandatory anti-corruption judicial specialization in existing local and appeal  courts: there will be designated special judges to consider all corruption-related crimes on a permanent basis
  • anti-corruption special judges will be hearing all corruption related cases (not only those under NABU jurisdiction)
  • creation of the anticorruption chamber within the  Cassation criminal court;
  • selection procedure for anti-corruption judges will be the same as for the regular judges.

Contrary to the draft law #6011 registered earlier in January 2017, the draft law #6529 doesn’t contain additional guarantees for impartial and transparent selection of anti-corruption judges and makes anti-corruption judiciary administratively dependent from the unreformed judicial framework.

According to the  draft law, until new anti-corruption judges are selected all courts must designate existing judges for consideration of corruption crimes. Since the draft law does not set any deadline for selection of new anti-corruption judges, temporary period with existing judges acting as anti-corruption judges may last permanently.

The draft law contradicts Ukraine’s commitment reflected in the most recent IMF Memorandum, which requires Ukraine to “operationalize the anti-corruption court established by the June 2016 Law on the Judiciary” and focus on the procedure of selection of the anti-corruption judges.

The Reanimation Package of Reforms has issued a negative statement regarding this draft law requesting the Parliament not to put it into the agenda for voting.

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