Rafael Lusvarghi, former DNR (Donetsk People’s Republic) militant, could not be passed by the exchange list as he is a Brazilian citizen, as Vasyl Hrytsak, the Head of SBU, said at the briefing, broadcasted by 112 Ukraine.
“According to my information, he (Rafael Lusvarghi, - ed.) was not on the exchange list and he could not be exchanged anyway as he is a Brazilian citizen. We can hand over a citizen of another state only to the consular agency, the embassy of the state of which he is a citizen. We could not hand over the Brazilian to the territory of DNR (Donetsk People’s Republic, - ed.) and LNR (Luhansk People’s Republic, - ed.),” he said.
As it was reported earlier, SBU officers detained Lusvarghi in October 2016 when he was crossing Ukraine’s border in D terminal of the Boryspil airport.
A couple of months later, in January of 2017, Kyiv Pechersky District Court found the Brazilian guilty of the formation of a terrorist organization, of the creations of illegal armed formations and sentenced him to 13 years of imprisonment with a confiscation of property. He became the first non-Russia foreigner sentenced by Kyiv for the participation in Donbas war.
Kyiv Court of Appeal canceled the sentence on August 2017 and returned the Lusvarghi case for a retrial.
Later, the pre-trial restriction for Lusvarghi was changed. The militant will be released on personal commitment, according to which he cannot leave Kyiv and has to inform the court about the change of residence and appear in court on the first request.
Igor Volk, the prosecutor on the case, initiated the change of the preventive measure. He applied to the court with this request on December 15. In around two weeks before the hostage exchange, when Ukraine passed 233 people, 73 prisoners came back to the territory controlled by the Government.
The nationalist caught Lusvarghi and brought him to SBU building on May 4.