Head of the Prosecutor General's Office of Ukraine (PGO) Yuriy Lutsenko on Wednesday signed off on the indictment of Oleksandr Onyschenko, a deputy of the Verkhovna Rada, who figures prominently in a criminal investigation into alleged embezzlement along with other high ranking officials.
The charges relate to the sale of natural gas under the aegis of PJSC Ukrgazvydobuvannia, the press service of the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office has said.
On July 27, PGO head Yuriy Lutsenko signed a notice that MP Oleksandr Onyschenko, a member of the People's Will parliament faction, is suspected of wrongdoing, the press service said.
"Signing the indictment against Onyschenko allows the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office has to bring the case against the main alleged perpetrator and others involved in the "gas scam" to its logical conclusion – a guilty court verdict. The next step is to declare Onyschenko a fugitive, an international fugitive," head of the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office (SAP) Nazar Kholodnytsky said.
He said that if Onyschenko continues to evade Ukrainian authorities, "we will ask the court to authorize procedures allowing legal measures to be taken (against Onyschenko) in absentia."
The SAP may seek approval to confiscate all property of the suspects involved in the gas scam," Kholodnytsky said.
As was earlier reported, on June 22 Ukraine's National Anti-Corruption Bureau and SAP made public the scheme involving the gas production and sale scheme involving PJSC Ukrgazvydobuvannia. As a result of this gas scheme, the state suffered damage in the amount of UAH 3 billion.
Ukraine's parliament on July 5 voted to allow law enforcers to hold Onyschenko's liable and to detain and arrest him. Onyschenko fled Ukraine before the vote.
As of July 26, twelve suspects have been detained, ten of whom were remanded to pretrial confinement for 60 days.