How former Ukrainian judge Mykola Chaus who allegedly hid bribes in jars, was arrested in Chisinau. Journalists from Kiev suggest connection with Veaceslav Platon’s case

Anastasia Nani, Victoria Dodon
02/03/2017
Foto: Unian

Mykola Chaus, a former controversial Ukrainian judge was detained in Chisinau. He was in the sight of the prosecution in Kiev after he allegedly extorted bribes of $ 150,000 and he had examined several cases involving participants in Euromaidan. According to Viorel Morari, head of Anti-Corruption Prosecution,  the former magistrate  came to Buiucani Police Inspectorate, saying that he illegally crossed the state border. Meanwhile, journalists in Kiev suggest that Mykola Chaus' arrest is a "prize" which Vlad Plahotniuc gave to the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, for businessman Veaceslav Platon’s extradition in Chisinau.

UPDATE Mykola Chaus was arrested for 15 days, according to Radio Free Europe. The meeting was held behind closed doors, in the absence of the magistrate.

Andrei Demian, deputy head of the Criminal Investigation Section of Buiucani Police Inspectorate said Mykola Chaus was  accompanied by a  lawyer  and he came with a self-denunciation. "He said that he had come from Ukraine, but gave no details. Shortly, the Anticorruption Prosecution took over the case", said Andrei Demian.

"Buiucani Police Inspectorate did not know that he was internationally wanted, they initiated a case and he was arrested. The file was withdrawn from Buiucani Police Inspectorate and  was sent to the Anticorruption Prosecutor’s office. The Prosecution examined a request of rogatory commission on identification and arrest of Chaus, who served as judge and is wanted for a corrupt act in Ukraine. Chaus is former judge and special judicial officer and special judicial officers are managed by Prosecution, which is why the case on illegal crossing of the state border is handled by the Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office", said Viorel Morari.

According to the head of the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s office, former magistrate is now in remand at the National Anticorruption Center. "There is request of rogatory commission. The National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine and the Prosecutor General of Ukraine were informed yesterday about Mykola Chaus’ arrest. The competent authorities of Ukraine should initiate the extradition proceedings and request his extradition. The procedure takes long time", said the prosecutor.

Meanwhile, several journalists in Kiev argue that, in fact, the authorities of the two countries made an exchange between Mykola Chaus and controversial businessman Veaceslav Platon. "Do your remember the Moldovan businessman who suddenly was handed over to the Moldovan authorities? It is believed that this would be the prize offered to the local oligarch Vlad  Plahotniuc who has influence in his country as the president and who is known to have historical relations with Petro Poroshenco. Businessman was changedwith Chaus, and today (day of  detention - n.r.) is the logical continuation of the story", wrote Svetlana Kriukova, journalist at the Ukrainian publication Strana.ua on the socialization network Facebook.

In August, 2016 Mykola Chaus was caught in the act while receiving a generous bribe of 150,000 dollars. Press in Kiev reported that the magistrate was adjudicating  a drug dealer when suddenly he announced a break. Then he left the court, met with a person who gave him a bribe of 150,000 dollars, then came back and he delivered the sentence. Judge hid some money in jars, burying them in his own yard. Ukrainian prosecutors could not detain him because the judge had immunity, which could be removed with the consent of the Verkhovna Rada. MPs gave their consent on September 6, after the judge managed to flee abroad. Initially, it was believed that Mykola Chaus had fled to Crimea, annexed by the Russian Federation.

Mykola Chaus is also known for having given several controversial decisions in cases of many participants in Euromaidan and of some businessmen.

Anastasia Nani, Victoria Dodon
02/03/2017

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