By: Harshitha B
October 12 2020
Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden has not been formally listed as a criminal suspect by high-level Ukrainian government officials.
Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden has not been formally listed as a criminal suspect by high-level Ukrainian government officials.In July 2020, a social media post, claiming that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden had been formally listed as a criminal suspect by high-level Ukraine government officials, in a major case involving his son Hunter Biden, went viral on social media. Hunter’s involvement with a Ukraine-based gas company was at the epicenter of an impeachment inquiry into President Trump’s Donald Trump had pressured Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy to launch investigations against the former president and Hunter’s business dealings in the Ukrainian gas company Burisma. In May 2020, it was reported that Andriy Derkach, an independent member of Ukraine’s parliament who previously aligned with a pro-Russian faction had released audio recordings consisting of edited fragments of phone conversations between the former vice-president and Petro Poroshenko, the then president of Ukraine. Kyiv Post reported that Ukrainian prosecutors had launched a treason investigation of Poroshenko. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky also called on his law enforcement agencies to investigate the issue. The claim that the former vice president had been listed as a criminal suspect was a misconstruction of events, explained PolitiFact. Daria Kaleniuk, executive director and co-founder of the Anti-Corruption Action Centre, a leading anti-corruption voice in Ukraine, told PolitiFact, that Joe Biden had not been listed as a suspect in any criminal case in Ukraine and that no court in Ukraine had any right to issue a notice of suspicion in a criminal investigation; that is done only by prosecutors. Kaleniuk explained that Derkach’s complaint was registered only because it had been rejected by prosecutors. "It doesn’t mean that Joe or Hunter Biden are suspects. It means that, according to the Ukrainian criminal procedure code, all formal criminal complaints have to be registered by law enforcement agencies, and if they don’t do so, the claimant can force prosecutors to start formal investigation through court," she said.