During the judicial reform, each judge must be examined for integrity and competence. Those who have failed such an examination are to be dismissed. The recommendation for dismissal is prepared by the High Qualification Commission of Judges, and dismissal is made by the High Council of Justice.
In fact, the Qualification Commission does its best to recommend a minimum of judges for dismissal. There are no more than 6% of them among those who pass the test. But the High Council of Justice does not dismiss even this meager amount of dishonest ones.
For example, the notorious judge of Kyiv District Court Bohdan Sanin
, who forbade the Maidan and gave free hand to riot police during the Revolution of Dignity, is still in office. He has been found not suitable
for his position in April 2018, but he still receives a salary, is a judge speaker, and has appeared on "Vovk's tapes
In total, as of February 2019, the Qualification Commission has sent 128 recommendations for the dismissal of incompetent and dishonest judges. For more than 6 months, the HCJ has dismissed no more than 20 of them.
Consideration of these recommendations is as long as possible and constantly postponed. Unscrupulous judges do not waste this time. Recently, SBI investigators exposed
a criminal scheme of cooperation between a judge of the Olevsky District Court, a lawyer and an investigator of the local police department. For a bribe, they returned the seized property to the amber diggers by adopting relevant court decisions for a fee. This judge is Oleksandr Stratovych, who failed the exam
back in December 2018 and had long to be released. But the High Council of Justice did not rush to do this and scheduled the first meeting only on August 1, which was postponed indefinitely. It is up to the guess, how much Stratovych has earned during this time thanks to the delay made by the HCJ.
The HCJ gives the opportunity to resign to the majority of judges who are recommended to be dismissed. They are given the right of great lifetime judicial retention at the expense of the budget. Thus, the odious chairman of the Dniprovsky court of Kyiv, Nelia Lastovka resigned
though she was found to be ineligible
and had to be fired. Even the aforementioned Judge Stratovych, who had been exposed by the SBI, had resigned.
Some unscrupulous judges are even more lucky because the HCJ refuses to grant the Qualification Commission's dismissal recommendation. For example, as early as July 4, 2018, the HQCJ found the judge of the Maidan from the Kyiv District Administrative Court Sergiy Lapiy ineligible
. The HCJ had been thinking for almost a year, and in August refused
to dismiss him.