Outrage erupts in Ukraine over activist lawyer’s murder

AFP KIEV (AFP-Jiji) — The murder of a Ukrainian lawyer who helped convict her sister’s well-connected killer sparked public outrage and a warning Tuesday from the foreign minister that the slaying marked “a challenge to the state.”

Activist attorney Iryna Nozdrovska spent two years working on the case against Dmytro Rossoshansky — a Kiev judge’s nephew convicted of driving under the influence in a fatal car crash in September 2015.

Rossoshansky was jailed in June 2017 but immediately filed an appeal.

The high-profile case was seen as a test of the Ukrainian justice system’s ability to fairly prosecute people with links to the upper echelons of power who had seemed untouchable prior to the pro-EU revolution that swept Kiev in 2014.

“She had succeeded in demonstrating to the court that there was plenty of evidence that Rossoshansky had been under the influence of drugs when he caused the accident,” the Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group said in a statement.

Rossoshansky was sentenced in June to seven years behind bars.

The Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group said Nozdrovska had received constant threats during the trial “from Rossoshansky himself, and from his mates.”

A Kiev court turned down Rossoshansky’s appeal last Wednesday and ordered him to remain in a detention center for another 60 days while the case underwent further hearings.

Kiev police said the 38-year-old mother of one was reported missing on Friday and that her body was discovered Monday.

“Iryna Nozdrovska’s body, reportedly naked, was found in a river in the Vyshhorod district near Kiev,” the rights group said.

Lawmaker Mustafa Nayyem wrote on Facebook that Rossoshansky’s father “warned Irina during [Friday’s] hearing: This won’t end well for you.”Speech

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