Police close case on persecution of UOC priest in Zolochiv by authorities

Zolochiv "veche" at the house of the UOC priest Maxim Yoenko. Photo: for-ua.com

The Zolochiv regional police department did not find corpus delicti in the persecution of the UOC cleric by the local mayor and deputies.

On March 12, 2021, the Zolochiv regional police department closed the criminal proceedings against local deputies led by Mayor Igor Grynkiv, opened in connection with the persecution of the UOC priest Maxim Yoenko.

The police opened proceedings as a result of deliberate actions aimed at inciting religious enmity and hatred, in particular, depriving the priest's family of private property and expulsion from the city. These actions also entailed a group armed attack on the house of Fr. Maxim.

However, now the proceedings were closed due to the lack of corpus delicti, the lawyers of the Union of Orthodox Lawyers (UOL) said in their Telegram channel.

According to the UOL, the police order is "completely illegal and unfounded." Indeed, only the persons involved in the proceedings were interrogated as witnesses, necessary examinations in the case were not carried out, did not identify the perpetrators of the group attack were not identified, and possible connection of the attackers with the deputies and the mayor of the city was not considered.

Lawyers believe that the closure of the case under such circumstances may indicate pressure on the investigating authorities by the local authorities. The UOL plans to appeal the closure in court.

Earlier, the administrative court did not satisfy the claim of the Zolochiv authorities, which demanded that the repair and construction work on the land plot owned by the family of the UOC priest be declared illegal.

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