The parliament of Ukraine has passed in its first reading the presidential draft bill of Criminal Procedure Code with 253 votes in favor.

Presenting the document President's aid Andriy Portnov informed that according to the new Code the period of custody during pre-trial investigation does not exceed six month, while for serious crimes the custody can last no longer than a year. A court may announce a bail between three and three hundred thousand hryvnias. In an offender faces a life term he or she will be processed by jury trial, which will include two judges and two juries.

The draft bill also limits the power of prosecutors. Prosecutors can no longer take a case for personal investigation, to arrest property, to define a measure of restraint or to use as a proof the information, obtained by a prosecutor alone.

Testimonies given to investigators or prosecutors will be no longer valid in court. Only testimonies given directly during the hearings in court will be taken into account. Silent investigation can be held only on serious and especially grave crimes.

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