The security service has arrested a senior prosecutor and a police chief for allegedly accepting bribes from an illegal gambling operator.
Ukraine.- The Ukrainian security service SBU has arrested a head of the local prosecutor’s office in the Smila Raion region and a national police chief in connection to an ongoing graft investigation.
The two men are accused of accepting more than UAH50,000 (€1,500) in bribes from the owner of an illegal gambling business.
It’s alleged that they agreed to turn a blind eye to the illegal gaming establishment in exchange for a monthly payment of UAH20,000.
The arrests follow an investigation by the SBU’s directorate on corruption and organised crime, assisted by both the State Bureau of Investigation and the national police force.
The prosecutor has been detained under Article 208 of the Criminal Procedural Code. The policeman was arrested at work.
The gambling establishment in question is reported to have been raided and shut down.
Investigations will continue in a bid to probe whether other people were involved.
The arrests come as Ukraine legalises gambling again more than a decade after its prohibition in 2009.
President Volodymyr Zelensky signed the country’s new Gambling Act into law last month to legalise both land-based casinos and online gambling.
In the meantime, the SBU has committed to rooting out illegal gambling operations ahead of the reintroduction of regulated licences.
In May, Ukraine ordered internet server providers to block access to another 59 gaming sites.