EU court dismisses lawsuit of Ukraine’s ex-minister over freezing of assets
MOSCOW, November 9 (RAPSI) – The European Court of Justice has dismissed an action filed by former Minister for Revenue and Duties of Ukraine Oleksandr Klimenko, to annul acts of the Council of Europe prolonging freezing of his assets, according to the court’s ruling published on its official website.
In May 2014, the Council ruled to freeze assets of several persons suspected of abuse of office by a public office-holder as well as misappropriation of public funds in the context of crisis in Ukraine and undergoing investigation by the country’s authorities. Klimenko was put on the list of such persons in the same year.
The former minister claimed that the actions of the Council lacked legal basis, infringed on his rights of the defense and on the right to effective judicial protection. He believes that the Council failed to provide adequate reasons for these measures and infringed on his rights to property and reputation.
The court ruled that reasons for freezing Klimenko’s assets were specific, concrete and set out the factors which constitute the basis for that decision, namely his status of a suspect in a criminal case.
In similar fashion the court dismissed ex-minister’s argument that his right to presumption of innocence was violated by actions of the Council. The court noted that Ukrainian authorities are “entirely aware of the fact that the applicant is only suspected of having committed the offences in question.”
Klimenko was ordered to pay legal costs.