4 New Criminal Cases Brought Against Yanukovych
KIEV — Ukrainian prosecutors have opened more criminal cases against fugitive President Viktor Yanukovych, including on charges of unconstitutional seizure of power, extremism and money laundering.
Acting prosecutor general and member of the nationalist Svoboda party, Oleh Makhnitsky, told reporters on Thursday that Yanukovych was wanted on power abuse and murder charges.
Last month, Ukraine requested Interpol to issue Red Notice, or an international wanted persons alert, for Yanukovych as part of that criminal case.
"Another criminal case concerns illegal acquisition of state property in especially large quantities … and money laundering," Makhnitsky said.
Separate legal proceedings were launched into his move to cancel the previous version of the constitution, which made Ukraine a parliamentary republic. Prosecutors suspect that his actions constitute "an unconstitutional seizure of power."
As part of another case Yanukovych is prosecuted over his recent news conference, in which he "publicly called for a coup in his official statements in Rostov-on-Don on Feb. 27."
The fugitive leader resurfaced in Russia days after being impeached on February 22 by erstwhile protesters who took control over parliament and banded together with disaffected deputies from the ex-ruling Party of Regions.
The impeachment vote came one day after opposition parties signed an agreement with Yanukovych on a political settlement to form a unity government, call early elections and reform the constitution.
Moscow has repeatedly questioned the legitimacy of Ukraine's new leadership.