SBI served notice of suspicion to SES officials, whose actions caused death of Ministry of Internal Affairs leadership in plane crash on 18 January 2023 (VIDEO)


SBI employees served suspicion notices to five officials of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine.

They violated flight safety rules for a helicopter carrying the top officials of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine.

The aircraft crashed on 18 January 2023 in Brovary.

The following persons were served with a notice of suspicion:

  • Head of the Department of Aviation and Air Search and Rescue of the SES of Ukraine,
  • the acting commander of the unit;
  • deputy commander for flight training;
  • the commander of the aviation squadron;
  • Head of the flight safety service of the Special aviation unit of the civil protection operational and rescue service of the SES of Ukraine from Nizhyn, Chernihiv region.

The investigation established that the officials had committed blatant violations of air traffic safety and operation rules, which led to the deaths of people.

SBI investigators reconstructed the day of the crash minute by minute, including decoding the black boxes.

It was established that in January 2023, a visit of the top officials of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine to Kharkiv and Dnipro regions was planned.

Despite the internal instructions and legal requirements, SES officials used a helicopter that was on duty to provide transportation for potential emergencies in Kyiv and the region. The aircraft had no permits for other types of flights.

During the preparation for the flight, the crew commander was not informed of the meteorological data along the entire route of the planned flight, in particular, of the extremely unfavourable weather conditions over the city of Brovary. The crew itself did not have the appropriate permits to fly in difficult weather conditions and the necessary certificates. However, none of the officials responsible for flight safety cancelled the flight or postponed it until favourable weather conditions improved.

Reconstruction of the tragic helicopter manoeuvre

Due to difficult weather conditions, the helicopter was forced to fly at an extremely low altitude, even lower than the height of the buildings on the route. The crew commander saw an obstacle - a multi-storey building - and began to perform a circling manoeuvre, however, he abruptly rose upwards, then lost his orientation in space and, due to a lack of skills, collided with the ground.

When the helicopter crashed, it damaged a kindergarten, neighbouring buildings and parked cars.

In addition to the senior officials of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, four women and a young child died in the crash as they were arriving at the kindergarten. 31 people, including 13 children, sustained injuries of varying severity.

Officials of the Aviation Department of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine were served with a notice of suspicion of violating flight safety rules (air traffic safety), which caused the death of people and large-scale material damage, i.e. of committing a criminal offence under Article 276 (3) of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

The head of the flight safety service of the same unit was served a notice of suspicion under Part 2 of Article 367 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (official negligence).

The sanction of the articles provides for a sentence of up to 10 years' imprisonment.

The issue of choosing a measure of restraint is currently being decided.

Procedural supervision is provided by the Prosecutor General's Office.