On November 10, 2022, the case of Viktor Medvedchuk’s lawsuit against ‘Bukvy’ on the protection of honor, dignity and business reputation due to the publication of news about Medvedchuk’s role in the conviction of the poet Vasyl Stus ended.
Viktor Medvedchuk was arrested by the SBU in 2022 with the accusation of high treason and was then swapped for some Azovstal defenders.
In November 2019, Medvedchuk filed a lawsuit in which he demanded to protect his honor, dignity and business reputation by refuting information that he considered unreliable. This information is a sentence from the ‘Bukvy’ news with the following content: ‘During the trial, Medvedchuk violated the lawyer’s ethics by admitting the guilt of his client’. The lawsuit continued despite Medvedchuk’s arrest and further exchange.
The publication, which became the reason for Medvedchuk’s lawsuit, was about the film ‘Forbidden’, which describes the last years of Vasyl Stus’ life.
Because of the scene of the trial of the poet, a scandal broke out around the film, since the scene was supposed to be cut from the script. As a result of public indignation, the film crew promised to include the scene of Stus’s trial in the film.
‘Bukvy’ became aware of the lawsuit filed by Medvedchuk only in May 2020. In June of the same year, the plaintiff decided to expand the list of participants in the case, involving as defendants the co-founders of the media outlet – Kateryna Roshuk and Petro Terentiev, due to which the case was started from the beginning.
In 2020-2022, the consideration of the case was repeatedly postponed, both at the initiative of the representative of the plaintiff, and due to the absence of the representative of the plaintiff in the court proceedings.
In the end, the court came to the conclusion that the plaintiff showed disinterest in protecting his interests, which he considers to have been violated, which is why the statement of claim should be left without consideration, returning it to the plaintiff.
In its decision, the court referred to the practice of the European Court of Human Rights, which noted in a number of decisions that the plaintiff is the most interested person in the proceedings initiated by him and therefore must contribute to such proceedings and refrain from unjustified prolongation of the proceedings and actions or inaction , which can lead to such a delay.