Advice

What is the criminal justice system in Ukraine?

The criminal justice system in Ukraine has its own specific.

WHO ARE THE PARTICIPANTS AND PARTIES TO THE CRIMINAL PROCEEDINGS IN UKRAINE?

According to p.25 Part 1 of the Article 3 of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine, participants to the criminal proceedings shall mean the parties to the criminal proceedings, a victim, his/her representative and legal agent, civil plaintiff, his/her representative and legal representative, civil defendant and his/her representative, representative of the legal entity subject to the proceedings, third party whose property is being resolved on arrest, another person whose rights or legitimate interests are restricted during the pre-trial investigation, a person in respect of whom the issue of extradition to a foreign state is being considered, an applicant, including a whistleblower, an affiant and his/her attorney, a witness, a bailor, interpreter/translator, expert, specialist, probation agency officer, court clerk, court administrator.

P.19 Part 1 the Article 3 of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine stipulates that the parties to the criminal proceedings shall mean as follows: for the prosecution, they shall mean an investigator, chief officer of pre-trial investigation agency, a public prosecutor, as well as the victim, his/her representative and legal agent in cases specified by this Code; for the defence, they shall mean a suspect, the accused (defendant), a convict, the acquitted, as well as the person in whose respect it is provided to apply compulsory medical or reformatory measures or the issue of applying such was considered, their defence counsels and legal representatives.

WHO ARE THE PARTICIPANTS TO THE CRIMINAL COURT PROCEEDINGS IN UKRAINE?

As stated by p.26 Part 1 the Article 3 of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine,  participants to the court proceedings shall mean the parties to the criminal proceedings, a victim, his/her representative and legal agent, civil plaintiff, his/her representative and legal agent, civil defendant and his/her representative, representative of the legal entity subject to the proceedings, a probation officer, a third party, in respect of whose property the issue of arrest is resolved, as well as other persons, at the request or complaint of which court proceedings are conducted in the cases provided for by this Code.

WHO ADMINISTERS CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM IN UKRAINE?

According to the Article 30 of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine, only court shall administer justice in criminal proceedings in accordance with rules prescribed by this Code. Refusal to administer justice shall not be permitted.

WHAT IS THE COMPOSITION OF THE COURT IN UKRAINE?

According to the Article 31 of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine, in the court of the first instance, criminal proceedings shall be conducted by a judge alone, except as provided for by parts 2, 3 and 12 of this Article.

Criminal proceedings in a court of the first instance in respect of crimes for the commission of which punishment of imprisonment for a term of over ten years is envisaged shall be conducted by a panel of three judges only upon a motion of the accused.

Criminal proceedings against several accused shall be conducted by a panel of three judges against all accused, provided at least one of them has filed a motion for such consideration.

Criminal proceedings in a court of the first instance in respect of crimes for the commission of which punishment of life imprisonment is envisaged shall be conducted by a panel of three judges, and upon the motion of the accused, by jury consisting of two judges and three jurors. Criminal proceedings in respect of several accused shall be conducted in respect of all accused provided at least one of them requested such consideration.

Criminal proceedings under appeal procedure shall be conducted by a panel comprising at least three judges, except as provided for by part 12 of this Article, and the number of judges shall be odd.

Criminal proceedings under cassation procedure shall be conducted by a panel of judges of the Criminal Court of Cassation of the Supreme Court consisting of three or more odd number of judges.

In cases provided for by this Code, criminal proceedings under cassation procedure shall be conducted by the Judicial Chamber of the Criminal Court of Cassation (Chamber), the Joint Chamber of the Criminal Court of Cassation (Joint Chamber) or the Grand Chamber of the Supreme Court (Grand Chamber).

The Joint Chamber shall consist of two judges elected by the assembly of judges of the Commercial Court of Cassation from each of the judicial chambers of the Commercial Court of Cassation and the chairperson of the Commercial Court of Cassation.

A session of the Chamber in the court of cassation shall be deemed quorate provided that more than half of its members are present.

A session of the Joint Chamber or the Grand Chamber shall be deemed quorate if at least two-thirds of its members are present.

Irrespective of the composition of judges who conducted the criminal proceedings, the review of a court judgment in a court of the first or appellate instance under exceptional circumstances shall be conducted by a panel of three or more odd-numbered judges; in the Supreme Court, it shall be reviewed in the composition of the Grand Chamber.

For consideration of specific criminal proceedings, a judge or a panel of judges shall be determined in accordance with the procedure provided for by part 3 of Article 35 hereof.

Criminal proceedings in the High Anti-Corruption Court shall be conducted: 1) in a court of the first instance they shall be conducted by a panel of three judges having a judicial background of at least five years, except in cases when no such judge in this court is entitled to participate in the consideration of the case on the grounds provided for by law; 2) under appellate procedure they shall be conducted by a panel of three judges having a judicial background of at least five years, except in cases when no such judge in this court is entitled to participate in the consideration of the case on the grounds provided for by law;

Criminal proceedings in the High Anti-Corruption Court during the pre-trial investigation shall be conducted by the investigating judge alone, and in the case of appeal against its rulings under appellate procedure, it shall be considered by a panel of at least three judges.

Wherever in a court of the first or appellate instance, which according to the rules of jurisdiction shall conduct criminal proceedings (except for the High Anti-Corruption Court), it is impossible to form the composition of a court provided for by this Article, criminal proceedings shall be conducted by the closest territorial court composition of the court, in which it is possible to form such a court.

Criminal proceedings concerning the consideration of an indictment against a minor, motions for release from criminal liability, application of coercive measures of a medical or reformatory nature, their continuation, change or discontinuation, and also criminal proceedings under appellate or cassation procedure as for review of court decisions adopted in respect of these issues shall be conducted by a judge authorised in accordance with the Law of Ukraine “On the Judiciary and the Status of Judges” for the conduct of criminal proceedings against minors.

Where such criminal proceeding is to be held by a panel of judges, only a judge authorised in accordance with the Law of Ukraine “On the Judiciary and the Status of Judges” to conduct criminal proceedings against minors shall preside at the court hearing.

WHAT IS THE TERRITORIAL JURISDICTION OF THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM IN UKRAINE?

As stated in the Article 32 of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine, criminal proceedings shall be conducted by the court within whose territorial jurisdiction the criminal offence has been committed. Wherever several criminal offences have been committed, criminal proceeding shall be conducted by the court within whose territorial jurisdiction the more grave offence has been committed, and wherever the offences were of equal gravity, it shall be conducted by the court within whose territorial jurisdiction the most recent criminal offence has been committed. Where the place of commission of a criminal offence is not possible to establish, the criminal proceeding shall be conducted by the court within whose territorial jurisdiction pre-trial investigation has been completed. This paragraph shall not apply to criminal proceedings which fall within the substantive jurisdiction of the High Anti-Corruption Court in accordance with the rules of Article 33-1 hereof.

Criminal proceedings with regard to criminal offences committed in the territory of Ukraine and referred to the substantive jurisdiction of the High Anti-Corruption Court shall be conducted by the High Anti-Corruption Court.

Criminal proceedings on criminal charges against a judge shall not be conducted by the court where the accused is holding or held the office of a judge. Where under part 1 of this Article criminal proceeding against a judge shall be conducted by the court where the accused is holding or held the office of a judge, such criminal proceeding shall be conducted by the court of another political unit (Autonomous Republic of Crimea, oblast, the city of Kyiv or Sevastopol) which is territorially the closest to the court where the accused is holding or held the office of a judge.

If a criminal offence, the pre-trial investigation of which was conducted by the territorial branch of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (except for criminal offences that are subject to the jurisdiction of the High Anti-Corruption Court), has been committed within the territorial jurisdiction of the local anti-corruption office of Ukraine, the criminal proceeding shall be conducted by a court territorially closest to the court at the location of the respective territorial office of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine, another political unit (Autonomous Republic of Crimea, oblast, city of Kyiv or Sevastopol).

WHAT IS THE INSTANCE JURISDICTION OF THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM IN UKRAINE?

According to the Articles 33 and 33 (1) of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine, criminal proceedings in the first instance shall be conducted by local general courts, and also by the High Anti-Corruption Court.

Criminal proceedings in the appellate instance shall be conducted by the respective courts of appeals, and also by the Appellate Chamber of the High Anti-Corruption Court.

Criminal proceedings in the cassation instance shall be conducted by the Supreme Court.

Criminal proceedings on newly discovered circumstances shall be conducted by the court which rendered the reviewed decision.

Criminal proceeding in exceptional circumstances shall be conducted on the grounds specified in clauses 1 and3, part 3, Article 459 hereof by the court that made the decision under review, and on the grounds specified by clause 2, part 2, Article 459 hereof, it shall be conducted by the Grand Chamber of the Supreme Court.

Subject-matter jurisdiction of the High Anti-Corruption Court. High Anti-Corruption Court shall be responsible for criminal proceedings concerning corruption offences provided for by the note of Article 45 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, Articles 206-2, 209, 211, 366-2, 366-3 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, in the presence of at least one of the conditions provided for by clauses 1–3, part 5 of Article 216 of the Criminal Procedure Code of Ukraine.

Investigating judges of the High Anti-Corruption Court shall exercise judicial control over the observance of the rights, freedoms and interests of persons in criminal proceedings in respect of criminal offences within the jurisdiction of the High Anti-Corruption Court in accordance with part 1 of this Article.

Other courts defined by this Code shall not consider criminal proceedings in respect of criminal offences that fall within the jurisdiction of the High Anti-Corruption Court (except as provided by paragraph 7, part 1 of Article 34 hereof).

WHO ARE THE LAW-ENFORCEMENT OFFICIALS IN THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM IN UKRAINE?

P.4 (1) Part 1 of the Article 3 of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine stipulates that an inquiring officer shall mean an official of the inquiry unit of the National Police, security body, a body controlling observance of tax legislation, a body of the State Bureau of Investigations, in cases established by this Code, an authorised person of another unit of these bodies, which are authorised within the power provided for by this Code to conduct pre-trial investigation of criminal offences.

According to the p.7 (1) Part 1 of the Article 3 of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine, chief officer of the inquiry body shall mean chief officer of the inquiry unit of the National Police, security body, a body controlling the observance of tax legislation, a body of the State Bureau of Investigations, and in case of absence of an inquiry unit, it shall mean chief officer of a body of pre-trial investigation.

As stated by the p.8 (1) Part 1 of the Article 3 of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine, chief officer of the pre-trial investigation body shall mean chief officer of the Main Investigation Department, investigation department, division, branch of the National Police, security body controlling observance of tax legislation, First Deputy or Deputy Director of the State Bureau of Investigations, chief officer of the Main Investigation Department, investigation department, department of the State Bureau of Investigations, Main Detective Unit, Detective Unit, Detective Department, Internal Control Unit of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine and his deputies acting within their powers. 

According to the p.17 (1) Part 1 of the Article 3 of The Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine,  investigator shall mean an official of the National Police, security body, body controlling compliance with tax legislation, the State Bureau of Investigations, the Main Detective Unit, the Detective Unit, the Detective Department, the Internal Control Unit of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine, authorised within its competence provided for by this Code to conduct pre-trial investigation of criminal offences.

Please, also see the following article Attorney in Kyiv Ukraine: call to get legal advice

Image

Work schedule:

Monday-Saturday,
from 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.