SBU General Illya Vitiuk filmed the shootings on the Maidan by Berkut riot police as an operative of the service, but later deleted the video, the Prosecutor General’s Office and the former head of the Maidan Crimes Investigation Department, Serhiy Horbatiuk confirmed in a comment to Slidstvo.Info.

The Kyiv Berkut special forces shot dead 48 protesters and wounded another 80 during the Revolution of Dignity on Instytutska Street on February 20, 2014.

In one of the videos, at 3 minutes and 10 seconds into the video, a man in civilian clothes and a dark hat appears on the Berkut side, namely at the corner of Bankova and Instytutska streets. He is filming on his phone as Berkut officers are shooting at protest.

Slidstvo.Info journalists asked the Prosecutor General’s Office, whose department investigates crimes committed during the Revolution of Dignity, whether the person in the video was identified, whether he provided the footage taken on his phone, and whether he was interrogated.

“The person specified in the request, who was recorded at 03:10 of the video posted on the Internet video hosting service Youtube, was identified as an employee of the Security Service of Ukraine. The said person was interrogated as a witness, but no useful information of evidentiary nature or interest to the investigation was obtained from his testimony,” the response to the request of Slidstvo.Info reads.

Slidstvo.Info asked the former head of the Department for Investigation of Crimes Committed during the Maidan, and now a serviceman, Serhiy Horbatiuk, to comment on which of the SBU officers was interrogated as a witness in connection with this video.

“Indeed, we identified this person in 2019, and summoned him for interrogation at the same time. It was Illya Vitiuk, an SBU operative at the time. He did not provide us with the video he shot from the side of Berkut special forces. He said that his phone had been stolen from him in a gym, and he had deleted the video from Instytutska Street before that. He could not identify any of the shooters either,” says Horbatiuk.

When asked by Slidstvo.Info why Vitiuk was interrogated only in 2019 about the events of 2014, Horbatiuk said that his identity could not be established for a long time: “And he himself did not contact the investigators in all these years. Although it was his duty as a representative of law enforcement agencies, not his right.”

The Slidstvo.Info journalists sent a request to the SBU to find out whether Illya Vitiuk was involved in the events during the Maidan.

On October 18, 2023, the Sviatoshynskyi District Court of Kyiv delivered a verdict in the case of the shootings on Instytutska Street. The former deputy commander of Kyiv’s Berkut, Oleh Yanishevskyi, was sentenced to life imprisonment, his subordinates Pavlo Abroskin and Serhiy Zinchenko were sentenced to 15 years in prison (all three were exchanged for Ukrainian prisoners in December 2019 to the so-called “LPR”), Oleksandr Marynchenko was sentenced to 5 years in prison, which he had already served in a pre-trial detention center while the case was being heard, while Serhiy Tamtura was acquitted by the court.

Slidstvo.Info journalists investigated in detail the wealth of the wife and mother of the country’s chief cyber intelligence officer and found that his family owns real estate worth at least UAH 25.5 million ($656,671) at market value. In particular, Illya Vitiuk’s wife, Yulia, bought an apartment worth more than UAH 20 million ($502,317) during the war.

On the eve of the publication of the investigation, on April 1, Slidstvo.Info journalist Yevhen Shulhat was approached by employees of the Solomyanskyi military registration and enlistment office who tried to hand him a draft summons, in a supermarket in the Obolonskyi district of Kyiv. Thanks to the video from surveillance cameras, Slidstvo.Info established that the instructions to the military registration and enlistment office employees were given by an SBU employee, namely, from the Department of Counterintelligence Protection of the State’s Interests in the Field of Information Security. This is the same SBU department whose head, General Illya Vitiuk, was probed by Yevhen Shulhat a few days earlier. 

On April 8, Slidstvo.Info investigator Yevhen Shulhat and lawyer Oksana Maksymeniuk filed a complaint with the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine.

The General Staff reported that they had transferred the head of the Solomianskyi military registration and enlistment office to a lower position in one of the combat units of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, and the head of the SBU had suspended the head of the cybersecurity department, Illya Vityuk, from his duties.

READ ALSO: Ill-gotten Gains? SBU Cybersecurity Chief’s $650,000+ Property Empire Exposed