17 hectares land theft: case sent to court

11.08.2022 00:00

On Aug. 10, 2022, the National Bureau and the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office issued indictments in the case of theft of 17.11 hectares of particularly valuable land, which caused UAH 11.6 million in losses to the state.

As established, in 2016-2017, the Head of a state enterprise subordinate to the National Academy of Agrarian Sciences of Ukraine and the Head of the Main Department of the State Geocadastre in Vinnytsia region forged documents to bypass the legal procedure (the consent of the Cabinet of Ministers) to transfer 10 plots of especially valuable land (​​17.11 hectares) into private property.

To make the scheme look legal, a legend was offered that the land was allegedly provided to the employees of the state enterprise for personal farming needs. However, according to the investigation, almost all those who got the plots had nothing to do with the state enterprise. Moreover, a close relative of the SE head was among the owners of the plots.

At the request of NABU and SAPO, the land plots were seized by court. In October 2021, the Detectives completed the investigation.

This episode is one of those related to illegal transactions with land managed by structures within the National Academy of Agrarian Sciences of Ukraine. Probes into some of them are already completed with case files having been sent to the HACC.

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