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Charges dropped against Ukrainian volunteers detained in Poland for transporting helmets for the Army

He was delivering helmets to Ukraine. The investigation has been remitted because the social harm is negligible

On July 30, the District Prosecution Office in Zamość remitted the investigation against Oleh I., a Ukrainian citizen who wanted to deliver 551 helmets to Ukraine without required permission. The charges against him in this case were laid by the Prosecution Office on Monday. As the District Prosecutor in Zamość Marek Grodzki stated, the investigation was remitted due to the conclusion that the social harm of the offence that Oleh I. was charged of is negligible.

He admitted to the charges

The investigation concerned the events of late June this year when two Ukrainian citizens at the border crossing in Zosin reported to the custom officers the export of 551 helmets that had been bought in Poland and had been previously withdrawn from the military inventory. They didn’t have the permission required by the law for exporting the helmets. The expert appointed by the Prosecution Office stated that 116 helmets are still to be considered a weapon and their turnover is restricted. As for the rest of the helmets, their guarantee had expired, they didn’t conform to the standards, and thus no permission was needed to export them.

Oleg I. was interrogated in the Prosecution Office on July 28 and he admitted to the charges. He gave comprehensive explanations. He said that he came from Novovolynsk and that he was transporting the helmets along with the rest of the equipment for the inhabitants of that city who had formed a brigade to fight pro-Russian separatists. The helmets were purchased in a military shop in Lublin.

The law was broken

As the Deputy of the District Prosecutor in Zamość Mirosław Buczek says, the investigation has been remitted according to the standing procedures. In this case the law had been broken, that’s the reason the charges against Oleh I. were laid, but after having examined all the circumstances of the case and having collected the full evidence – testimonies of the witnesses, the opinion of the expert, the explanations of the suspect – the prosecutor decided that no punishment is necessary.

Buczek also adds that the prosecutor has taken into consideration, inter alia, that the Ukrainian acted on noble motives: the will to help other people and protect human life. Moreover, he didn’t take any reward.

The legal help for the Ukrainian was provided by the foundation Otwarty Dialog (Open Dialogue), which deals with protecting human rights and supporting democracy, and which organised purchasing helmets and bulletproof vests for the Ukrainian Army, The National guard, observers, and journalists.

“Non-lethal weapons”

The District Prosecution Office in Zamość runs yet another investigation concerning 42 bulletproof vests that Ukrainian citizens attempted to transport at the turn of June and July through the border crossing in Hrebenne. The vests were given to them by the Foundation Otwarty Dialog. They also didn’t have permission to export them.

Currently, the Regional Prosecution Office in Tomaszów Lubelski runs another investigation concerning the export without a required permission of 5 bulletproof vests through the border crossing in Hrebenne. The citizens of Ukraine were transporting through Poland from the Czech Republic. In those both investigations, no charges have been laid.

The Defence Minister Tomasz Siemoniak said last week that bulletproof vests and helmets are specified as “non-lethal weapons,” they are used not for killing, but for personal protection. He emphasized that there is no reason for Polish custom ofiicers to block their export to Ukraine.

[hr]Source:, translated by Polish friends, edited by Alya Shandra



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