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Ukraine’s Security Service opens 157 criminal cases against its own staff

April 15, 2015, 12:40 UTC+3 KIEV

The cases were opened against security service emloyees fulfilling their duties in 2013 and 2014

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Head of Ukraine’s Security Service, Valentin Nalivaychenko

Head of Ukraine’s Security Service, Valentin Nalivaychenko

© ITAR-TASS/Maxim Nikitin

KIEV, April 15. /TASS/. Ukraine’s Security Service (SBU) has opened 157 criminal cases against its current members who fulfilled their duties in 2013 and 2014, the head of the service, Valentin Nalivaychenko, said on Wednesday.

"We have brought charges not only against the service’s leadership, but also against ordinary employees. Today 157 criminal cases have been opened. They are against people who have not left Ukraine. They are being questioned," he told the session of the parliament’s committee on preventing and fighting against corruption.

The SBU is also investigating a case against the head of Border Service of Russia’s Federal Security Service, Nalivaychenko said.

A search is underway for the employees of the disbanded elite Berkut police unit, the SBU chief said. Kiev blames Berkut for the deaths of protesters during the February 2014 riots. However, a BBC journalistic investigation revealed that the protesters were the first who opened fire on police.

During the clashes in Kiev on February 18-20, 2014, more than 80 people, including Berkut members, were killed and hundreds of others were wounded. Over 20 of those wounded later died in hospitals.

Last week, the SBU initiated criminal proceedings against Ukraine’s former president, Viktor Yanukovych, on charges of usurping power, the head of SBU’s main investigative department, Vasily Vovk, said.

Criminal proceedings have been also initiated by the SBU against judges of the constitutional court and other high-ranking officials on charges of acting in cahoots with an aim to change the constitutional order in Ukraine and usurp power.

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