NABU, SAPO expose scheme of corrupt pressure on courts (VIDEO+PHOTOS)

An undue benefit of approximately USD 2.7 million intended for the Head of the Supreme Court and a lawyer may be part of a broader scheme of corrupt pressure on the courts. This is what NABU Director, Semen Kryvonos, and the Head of SAPO, Oleksandr Klymenko, told a joint press briefing on May 16, 2023.

The scheme was exposed after the infiltration of an undercover NABU detective into the criminal group. The episode involving the "reward" for the Head of the Supreme Court is linked to a court decision made in favor of the owner of the Finance and Credit group.

According to Semen Kryvonos, this case visually, not just declaratively, demonstrates the main priorities of the new leadership of both NABU and SAPO. After all, it is for the first time these law enforcement agencies have exposed such high-level corruption.

Currently, investigative actions are underway to identify all individuals involved in this specific episode and the activities of the criminal group as a whole. According to Oleksandr Klymenko, this criminal scheme could also influence other courts in Ukraine. Therefore, it was highly important to stop it here and now.

The Head of the Supreme Court and one more person have been detained. The preliminary legal qualification includes Part 4 Article 368, Part 4 Article 369 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

The leadership of NABU and SAPO calls on the media and the public to pay maximum attention to this high-profile case.


After receiving information about the existence of a criminal group operating within the judicial branch and its leadership, NABU decided to carry out an undercover operation. The infiltration into the group helped reveal and record several episodes of criminal activity.

In particular, as a result of complex operational and technical measures, NABU obtained information about the contacts between a businessman, the owner of the Finance and Credit group, and a lawyer, the head of a bar association. During the investigation, it was revealed that the bar association was used to conceal criminal activities. Under the guise of legal services, members of the group arranged with judges about rulings in favor of their "clients" (individuals or legal entities) for a certain "reward".

The lawyer acted as an intermediary in the transfer of undue advantage to the leadership of the Supreme Court, which had to secure rulings in favor of the businessman. Several days after getting in touch, on March 15, a hearing in the case was supposed to take place, but it was postponed, as previously agreed. The records confirm the agreement to postpone the hearing for two weeks to a month, as well as a request to confirm the readiness for such postponement before the undue advantage was provided in full.

Subsequently, the lawyer received several tranches from the businessman, and finally, in early April, the entire sum was collected and deposited in a bank vault for safekeeping.

On April 19, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the businessman, and on May 1, the Chief Justice gave instructions to other members of the group regarding the money and the order of its distribution among certain members of the Grand Chamber who were involved in making the corresponding decision.

On May 3, the first batch was delivered, and on May 15, the transfer of the second tranche took place.

As urgent investigative actions were underway, detectives seized certain evidence of the crime, including during a search at the place of the principal suspect and other participants of the criminal group.

According to Article 62 of the Constitution of Ukraine, a person is considered not-guilty in the commission of a crime and cannot be subject to criminal punishment until he or she is found guilty by court.