KHARKIV OBLAST, UKRAINE, May 9 — On May 9, the court announced a guilty verdict for a 31-year-old man who worked in Izium’s “police” during the Russian occupation of the city. He is sentenced to 13 years in jail. Vladyslav Abdula, spokesman for the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) in the Kharkiv region, reported about this on his Facebook page.

Abdula wrote that thanks to the evidence base of SBU, they established that the man “voluntarily joined an occupation police station that operated in temporarily occupied communities.” 

Izium, a city in Kharkiv Oblast with a prewar population of 50,000, was occupied by Russians from April to September 2022. After Ukrainian troops liberated the city, a mass grave with about 450 bodies was discovered, with some bodies tortured, shot, or killed in a relentless shelling Russians inflicted on Izium before occupying it. 

Prosecutor’s Office representatives noted that, at the beginning of June 2022, the defendant “approached the so-called deputy mayor,” asking to endorse his employment in the “police.”  

After that, the Prosecutor’s Office writes, the man met with a “head” of Izium occupational police and had an interview with a representative of FSB (Russia’s Federal Security Service) with a call sign “Berkut.” Then, the man reportedly received an official ID and became a “judiciary officer of the police” in occupied Izium. 

The man allegedly illegally and forcefully detained Izium region residents and confiscated their property.  

Before getting the verdict from the court, the man was in detention. The defendant didn’t admit his guilt in the court. 

The court passed a guilty verdict under the p. 7 of Art. 111-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine for collaborationism and sentenced him to 13 years in prison. The verdict also deprives him of the right to hold positions in law enforcement for 15 years and sets to confiscate all property. 

During two years of full-scale war, Ukrainian law enforcement opened 1532 criminal proceedings related to collaborationism. In Kharkiv oblast, 639 people received a notice of suspicion of collaborationism.

Read more