The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has made a ruling on the appeal of former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych and his son Oleksandr regarding the sanctions placed on them by the EU in 2015 and 2016, reported Evropeyskaya Pravda with reference to the court secretariat.
In the lawsuit, the Yanukovych family appealed the CJEU’s ruling from a year ago. On September 15, the European General Court ruled on two waves of sanctions introduced by the EU Council against the former president and his son. The court in Luxembourg retroactively lifted the sanctions dating back to 2014, but confirmed the validity of more of the new sanctions which were in force after 2015.
Viktor and Oleksandr Yanukovych appealed last year’s ruling at the European Court of Justice (ECJ), which is considering the appeal of the rulings made by the first instance of the CJEU.
The grand chamber of the ECJ completely supported the original ruling, recognizing the sanctions against the Yanukovyches – the freezing of their assets – as legal.
The ruling made on October 19 by the ECJ specifies that “the fears of Viktor Fedorovych Yanukovych and Oleksandr Viktorovych Yanukovych that the Ukrainian court system is biased cannot call into question the justification of the charges against them for very specific cases of embezzlement of state funds”. The court also believes that the claimants have not provided any evidence which could call into question the justification of the charges brought against them in Ukraine.
The ECJ’s ruling concerns only one wave of sanctions which was in effect between March 2015 and March 2016 and is accordingly no longer in force. However, it is evidence that the attempts by the Yanukovych family to appeal the subsequent waves of sanctions against them (in 2016 and 2017) will probably also be unsuccessful, the news outlet observes.