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Ex-Berkut officer who assaulted reporter Maria Lebedeva in 2013 receives a suspended sentence

13.07.2023, 14:23
Photo: Hromadske
Photo: Hromadske

The Shevchenkivsky District Court of Kyiv sentenced Ruslan Marchuk, former deputy commander of the 1st platoon of the 3rd company of the Kyiv special MIA unit "Berkut", to five years in prison with a two-year probation period, finding him guilty of obstructing the legal professional work of a journalist, among other things.

The court ruling was issued on July 12, the Legal Advisory Group reports.

The court also suspended Marchuk's right to hold positions in law enforcement bodies for two years.

The court found Marchuk guilty of excess of authority or official powers accompanied with violence, illegal interference with the organization or holding of assemblies, obeying a patently criminal order or command, and obstruction of legal professional work of journalists.

Reporter Maria Lebedeva was one of the victims. The court partially satisfied her civil lawsuit and fined the convict UAH 50 thousand of moral redress. Lebedeva was asking the court for seven years in prison for Marchuk.

In her Facebook post, Maria noted that neither Marchuk nor his lawyer had come to the announcement of the ruling.

It will be recalled that on November 30, 2013, journalist Maria Lebedeva, who was covering the protests on Independence Square (Maidan), was approached by a Berkut officer. He grabbed her arms and shoved her away while trying to knock the equipment out of the reporter's hands.

"... They were acting ferociously, as if tasked to just kill these people", this is how Maria Lebedeva described the Berkut officers supperssing the Maidan protests on the night of November 30 at a hearing in the Marchuk case, the Legal Advisory Group notes.

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