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Agricompany under pressure of law enforcers

20.08.2021

Complainee: Bila Tserkva District Police Department of the Main Department of the National Police in Kyiv Oblast (National Police in Kyiv Oblast)

Complaint in brief: The Business Ombudsman Council received a complaint from an agricultural company engaged in grain and oilseeds cultivation. The company complained that law enforcers opened criminal proceedings for forgery of land lease agreements. In particular, investigators confiscated land documents from the company and seized its property.

The Council found out that landlords were trying to unilaterally terminate land lease agreements. As a result, the agricultural company was illegally deprived of the right to lease. Although the applicants sought to declare the agreements invalid in court, the judiciary authority acknowledged the validity of the agreements and the need to enforce them instead. During court hearings, the landlords neither provided convincing arguments, nor denied they had entered into land lease agreements with the complainant. As the seizure of property resulted in a crisis situation in the agricultural firm’s production, the company turned to the BOC for help.

Actions taken: After examining the complaint, the Council found it substantiated. The BOC recommended that the National Police in Kyiv Oblast and Kyiv Oblast Prosecutor's Office fully and impartially verify the legality of criminal proceedings in the agricultural company’s case. Among other things, the court established that the company had duly performed its contractual obligations to the landlords.

Result achieved: Due to involvement of the Council, law enforcers closed criminal proceedings in the agricultural company’s case and returned temporarily seized property. The case was successfully closed.