Tuesday, 18 July ‘23

This week’s overview of key events and links to essential reading.

Tuesday, 18 July ‘23

This week’s overview of key events and links to essential reading.

Tuesday, 18 July, 2023


Institute for War & Peace Reporting

Former Kherson Prison Head Accused of Deportation

Police investigators in the Kherson region issued a suspicion in absentia against Yevhen Sobolev, the former head of Kherson’s Northern Correctional Colony No. 90 for deporting prisoners to the Russian Federation, in violation of the laws and customs of war by a group of persons (Part 2 of Article 28, Part 1 of Article 438 of the criminal code of Ukraine). 

According to the investigation, at the beginning of the occupation of the region, Sobolev - a Ukrainian citizen - was appointed head of the “department of the service for the execution of punishments in the Kherson region”. 

In October and November 2022, by his order, more than 1,700 prisoners were deported from detention centres in the Kherson region and the Snigurivka colony in the Mykolaiv region to prisons located in the Russian Federation and the occupied territories of Ukraine. Ukrainian investigators have established the whereabouts of only 43 deported people.

This is Sobolev’s second suspicion. In May 2022, he was also issued a suspicion in absentia for treason under martial law (Part 2, Article 111 of the criminal code). The indictment in this case has already been referred to the court.

Two Russians Sentenced in Absentia for Robbery and Brutal Treatment

On June 28, a court in Kyiv region handed down verdicts in absentia against two Russian soldiers for robbery and brutal treatment of the civilian population. The Ivankiv district found private Volodymyr Nomokonov, 20, and corporal Belyk Bazarzhapov, 37, both from Chita in south-eastern Siberia, guilty of violating the laws and customs of war under Part 1 of Art. 438 of the criminal code. 

Nomokonov was sentenced to nine years in prison. On March 27, 2022, on the eve of the Russian forces’ retreat from the Kyiv region, the private and his comrades robbed a house in Obukhov Ichi, a village in Vyshgorod district where Russian soldiers lived during the occupation. The group stole equipment worth 36,000 hryvnias ( 950 US dollars), which included a washing machine, a generator, a chainsaw and a drill.

Bazarzhapov received a sentence of 11 years in prison. In March 2022, he stopped a car with civilians near the village of Ivankiv and ordered them at gunpoint to get out. He demanded their mobile phones and called them “Nazis” and “Banderites” (in reference to Stepan Bandera, who founded the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists during WWII). The corporal searched the car, took the phone belonging to the driver: he then beat him with the butt of a machine gun and interrogated him about his affiliation with the Armed Forces, the location of the Ukrainian military and law enforcement officers.

Former Assistant Judge Notified of Suspicion 

A former assistant judge of the Court of Appeals of the Kherson Region was notified in absentia of suspicion for high treason under martial law (Part 2 of Article 111 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine). 

The investigation found that the suspect, who has not been named, cooperated with representatives of the Federal Security Service (FSB) of the Russian Federation during the temporary occupation of Kherson city. 

The man is accused of providing information about pro-Ukrainian residents, representatives of law enforcement and judicial bodies, and of collecting and analysing the situation in the city. According to the investigation, he also filmed and shared a video of a pro-Ukrainian rally held in Kherson in the spring of 2022.

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