The NGO Anti Corruption Action Center has not received any money from the US government to support reforms in the General Prosecutor’s Office of Ukraine.
Christopher Smith, the Director of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) of the United States Embassy in Ukraine, addressed this issue in an official letter to the NGO.
The letter stated that the United States does not provide direct budgetary support to the GPU or any other public organs and that the $2,000,000 (which the investigators of the GPU are searching for) was received by the International Development Law Organization (IDLO) and the U.S. Department of Justice.
“The United States also provided the IDLO with $189,765.50 in grant funds that were awarded to the Anti-Corruption Action Centre for the sole purpose of supporting anti-corruption capacity building activities within the National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU) and the Special Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office (SAPO). These funds were wholly separate and distinct from the $2,000,000 in funding provided to the IDLO to encourage necessary refroms within the Prosecutor General’s Office” –stated the letter.
The Americans also noted that they are completely satisfied that the assistance provided to AntAC was used for it’s stated purpose, that is – the development of new anti-corruption bodies. In addition, the United States Embassy did not “request the Prosecutor General’s Office, or any other Government of Ukraine entity, for an investigation into the use of these funds.”
“The response from the United States Embassy – indisputably supports that the GPU violated the case without reason and the actions of the investigators – illegal. We believe that Shokin-Sevruk-Stolyarchuk are giving direct instructions to fabricate the accounts of our NGO. This is why the GPU is in no hurry to investigate the circumstances of the violations of this absurd case based on our application – contrary to lawful information, a single register has not been made in the Unified Register of Pre-Trial Investigations” – explains Olena Shcherban, lawyer with the Anti Corruption Action Centre.
A similar response AntAC received from IDLO – Mr. Erwin van der Borght, IDLO program director confirmed, that IDLO did not request the Prosecutor General’s Office to investigate the use of funds granted to AntAC under sub-grant.
Recall that on March 30th, AntAC filed an application of the crime to the GPU and demanded an investigation into the actions of the investigators and prosecutors, who, according to the activists, violated the criminal proceedings against the NGO and fabricated materials in the case.
Based on the otiosity of the GPU, the activists appealed to the Pechersk Court, however, the complaint of the NGO was not considered because of the alloted law period.
“The GPU continues to search for the missing funds, which, according to them is $2,000,000. Just last week they took documents from the Ministry of Economics. This is lunacy because even acting prosecutor Sevruk publicly acknowledged that the case was violated through the purpose of the investigation, not through some sort of circumstances surrounding the crime” – stated Vitaliy Shabunin, Chairman of the Anti Corruption Action Centre. All of the actions of the GPU in searching for the Americans money have nothing to do with the law, but rather is pure intimidation directed at one thing: shut the mouths of those who dare to speak publicly about the crimes of those that work in the GPU, fuse them or fabricate the cases” – the activist added.
The Anti Corruption Action Centre team belives that the inaction of the GPU and the delay of the investigating judge regarding the complaint of the activists, illustrate the mutual responsibility among investigators, prosecutors and judges, who cover up each other’s lawlessness.
“The pseudo-investigation of the GPU demostrates to the Americans the futility of any reform within the state organ. As the United States Embassy knows to the very cent how and where their money is spent, artificial attempts to uncover something look pathetic and only support the notion voiced by Ambassador Pyatt that the GPU can not successfully fight with internal corruption and is sabotaging all law enforcement reform.” – says Daria Kaleniuk, executive director at the Anti Corruption Action Centre.