SBI exposes officials who cut down centuries-old oaks in Chornobyl reserve shutterstock

SBI exposes officials who cut down centuries-old oaks in Chornobyl reserve

Elizaveta Volkotrub

The Director of Forestry and his accomplices were informed of the suspicion

In Kyiv region, the criminals organized the illegal felling of 100-year-old oaks on the territory of the Chornobyl Radiation and Ecological Biosphere Reserve worth over UAH 59 million.

According to the investigation, the head of the state enterprise organized the illegal felling of 185 oaks in December 2023 and involved three civilians in the implementation, issuing them special passes to the reserve. A law enforcement officer who accompanied the transport with the felled timber also joined in these actions, according to the State Bureau of Investigation.

The accomplices took the timber to one of the capital's timber collection points, where it was sold on the basis of fake documents.

The acting director of the state-owned enterprise "Northern Forest" and his accomplices were notified of suspicion of illegal logging and sale of timber, which caused grave consequences, by prior conspiracy by a group of persons. According to Articles 27, 28, and Part 4 of Article 246 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, they face imprisonment for up to 7 years.

The pre-trial investigation is ongoing. The full range of persons involved is being clarified, and additional investigative actions are being taken to establish all the circumstances of the case.

As EcoPolitic previously reported, in Sumy region, the chief engineer and foreman of the logging operations of the subsidiary Okhtyrsky Forestry were served with a notice of suspicion of organizing illegal deforestation.

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