Vinnytsya police named problems halting investigations into crimes against journalists
Qualification of the status of targeted journalists and the legal qualification of the crime itself are the main problems the Vinnytsia police faced while probing into crimes committed against the journalists. Volodymyr Plotytsia, Director of the Department for the Protection of the Interests of Society and the State of the National Police in the Vinnytsia Region, told it speaking to the IMI regional representative.
According to Plotitsa, the primary problem is how to correctly determine whether the victim is a journalist. The second is the problem of legal qualification, for example, crimes under Article 345-1 ("Threat or violence against a journalist") are often classified under Art. 171 ("Obstruction of lawful professional activity of journalists") of the Criminal Code.
Volodymyr Plotytsia said that the department could not really influence the work of investigators and how they work on the ground. Neither can they take the case, nor hand over it to yourself.
But police is going to establish a good communication between the aggrieved journalists and investigators.
To this end, the department has launched a special hotline for reporting offenses against journalists, the e-mail address of which is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Volodymyr Plotytsia also said that the main purpose of the department is to prevent crimes against journalists and help investigators to properly classify those crimes.
One of the functions of the department is to "protect the rights of journalists and counter crimes related to obstruction of their professional activities." But this, he added, is limited to the prevention of offenses against the safety and freely activities of journalists.
As IMI reported, Vinnytsia police have opened two criminal proceedings for preventing journalists from attending the session of the Ladyzhyn City Council.