One of the main reasons for a large-scale reform of law enforcement bodies was distrust of Ukrainians of the special militia forces “Berkut” and others that emerged during the Revolution of dignity. While the level of trust in law enforcement bodies had been low before, patent and unpunished crimes committed by militia officers set the people in turmoil. That is why the law enforcement reform from its very beginning in 2014 was probably the most active. In July 2015, a law “On Patrol Police” (on the establishment of the National Police of Ukraine) was adopted, patrol militia and the State Traffic Inspection were disbanded. Currently, the new police operate in 35 cities of Ukraine. Also, an independent State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) was created to investigate particularly serious crimes, including illegal actions of the police. The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) reform remains unfulfilled.
Law enforcement bodies reform includes:
➤ Reforms of the internal affairs bodies and tax militia: creation of a new structure of the police, its demilitarization, de-politicization, and limiting of functions.
➤ Reforms of the Prosecutor’s General Office: its transformation into a service of charge.
➤ Reforms of Pretrial Investigation Agencies: establishment of the State Bureau of Investigation, focused specialization of the National Police investigators.
➤ Reforms of the Security Service of Ukraine, its transformation into a public body of counterintelligence and counterterrorism.
➤ Reforms of the Criminal Law: establishment of an Institution of Criminal Offenses and adoption of a Code of Administrative Offenses.
➤ Reform of the penal system: demilitarization of the penitentiary service, establishment of a probation service.
Reform expert – Mykola Havroniuk, director of scientific development and a board member of the NGO “Center for Political and Legal Reforms.”
➤ The new patrol police operate in 35 cities of Ukraine and have already gained the people’s trust.
➤ The progress of recertification of the National Police.
➤ Formal completion of the competition to renew the Prosecutor’s Office staff. The number of employees was reduced by 25%.
➤ Liquidation of the Penitentiary Service territorial authorities and creation of these bodies in the system of the Ministry of Justice.
Measures to be taken:
➤ Expansion of the new patrol police activity throughout Ukraine.
➤ Reforming of operational tracking and investigative units of the National Police following the example of the patrol police, strengthening of their material and technical support.
➤ Total setting up of the SBI.
➤ Real rotation of the State Prosecutor’s Office staff. Fighting corruption at the Prosecutor’s Office.
➤ Introduction of video recording of investigations on a pre-trial stage.
➤ Reforming of the Security Service of Ukraine, reducing the number of employees and leaving only two functions: counter-intelligence and counter-terrorism ones.
Key laws adopted under the reform:
➤ The Law “On the Prosecutor’s Office”
➤ The Law “On the National Guard”
➤ The Law “On Probation”
➤ The Law “On the National Police”
➤ The Law “On the State Bureau of Investigation”
➤ The law “On Amendments to Some Legislative Acts of Ukraine concerning the Enforcement of Criminal Penalties and the Rights of Prisoners”
Laws to be adopted:
➤ The Draft Code of Ukraine “On Administrative Offenses” (ready for introduction, the previous project from May 26, 2004).
➤ The Draft Law “On the Financial Police” (registered in the Verkhovna Rada).
➤ The Draft Law “On the Military Police” (registered in the Verkhovna Rada).
➤ The Draft Law “On the Military Law Enforcement Service of the Armed Forces of Ukraine” (the law of 2002 is still in force, recent changes from Dec. 23, 2015).
➤ The Draft Law “On the Security Service of Ukraine.