Metropolitan of the UOC MP sentenced to 5 years in prison for anti-state activities
The court validated the evidence compiled by the SBU and handed down a 5-year imprisonment sentence to the clergyman.
In particular, he was convicted of crimes outlined in the Criminal Code of Ukraine:
- Article 109, Part 2 (actions aimed at forcibly altering or overthrowing the constitutional order or seizing state power)
- Article 110, Part 1 (encroachments on territorial integrity and inviolability of Ukraine)
- Article 161, Part 2 (violations of citizens' equality based on their racial, national, regional affiliation, religious beliefs, disability, and other criteria)
- Article 436-2, Part 3 (justification, recognition as legitimate, denial of armed aggression by the Russian Federation against Ukraine, glorification of its participants)
According to the investigation, the suspect distributed propagandist leaflets among believers, urging the seizure of power and alteration of Ukraine's state border.
Moreover, he posted publications on one of the Russian Orthodox Church's websites in support of Russian occupiers and their war crimes.
SBU-initiated examinations of seized materials (pro-Kremlin propaganda and literature) confirmed the facts of the metropolitan's unlawful activities.
It's worth noting that in May 2023, leveraging SBU evidence, a district court in Kropyvnytskyi rendered a landmark verdict in Ukraine. This marked the first instance where Metropolitan Ionafan of the UOC MP, the exarch of the Eparchy of Kyrovohrad, faced a legal decision. Both he and the secretary of this institution candidly acknowledged their culpability in the offenses ascribed to them by the Security Service.