Eastern Europe Russia As in all post-Soviet counties, Russian criminal process can be characterized by significant accusatory bias (low percentage of cases resulting in acquittals), courts ignoring the defense and high corruption risks in the work work of public sector lawyers. International law firms have traditionally had the leading positions in the Russian legal services market since the collapse of the USSR. They usually operate in the segment of commercial practices with a focus on highly capitalized branches, such as, for instance, company law, land law and investment management. The niche of criminal law belongs mainly to the local law firms and individual lawyers. The criminal law segment of the Russian legal services market has the following structure: white collar crimes, personal and property crimes, cases against the justice system, public security or the constitutional system. Based on the results of the ICBA Choice survey, Henri Reznik (Reznik, Gagarin and Partners law firm) and Henrikh Padva (Padva and Partners law firm) are among the top-rated experts representing the local legal community. As far as the rating of law firms is concerned, our experts highlight such large and well-known companies as Egorov, Puginsky, Afanasiev & Partners (which is also the largest law firm in Russia), Barshchevsky & Partners, Koblev and Partners and KIAP law firm. A separate category of criminal cases is represented by political trials, where political activities of the defendant constitute the major issue. Lawyers Mark Feigin and Ilia Novikov are widely known in this field in Russia.
Ukraine Ukrainian legal services market is precisely defined by deep links among such practices as criminal law, economic crimes (the so-called white-collar crime), private client practice and business protection services. The demand for the corresponding legal services in Ukraine is pretty much conditioned upon pressure on businesses and private individuals who own capital, exerted by the state fiscal and law enforcement authorities to replenish the country’s budget. Nevertheless, constraints and difficulties associated with pressure on business in Ukraine contribute to the above-mentioned practice areas' development, providing employment to Ukrainian lawyers. Even though white-collar crime has been formerly considered a predominantly niche practice for private lawyers, the continuously growing demand for these services from large businesses and wealthy individuals has contributed to the fact that it is now becoming a vital part in the portfolio of the largest law companies. A complete Ukrainian political reset after the presidential election in 2019 resulted in a series of reforms in Criminal Matters, creating a promising of new more transparent and fair legal rules for Ukrainian business and its viable defense.
In the meantime, the elections in Ukraine traditionally resulted in a series of high-profile public criminal proceedings related to persons holding positions designated as "senior positions" in the former government. Mostly, the fact of the start of such high-profile criminal proceedings in Ukraine can be heard in the course of press conferences and interviews of law enforcement officials, who stick “suspected” labels on a defendant in the case unless a relevant status of the latter in their statements, violating the presumption of innocence. Thus, it is imperative for Ukrainian business representatives and former officials to have an experienced lawyer specializing in white-collar crime.
Leading Ukrainian lawyers specializing in white-collar crime industry according to the ICBA: Yevhen Solodko, the partner of Sayenko Kharenko. In a poll undertaken by the ICBA, his colleagues in the Ukrainian legal market call Mr. Solodko an “unquestioned opinion leader” among lawyers in the sphere of White-collar crime, as well as an attorney who “never afraid to take on even the most difficult cases with a negative political context.” He defended the interests of famous politicians, businessmen and civil servants. Among them there are: Oleksandr Yefremov, the Party of Regions' leader, the largest political fraction in Europe, the People’s Deputy of Ukraine, the head of the Luhansk Regional Organization of the Party of Regions. Oleksandr Lavrynovych, political expert and former Minister of Justice of Ukraine; Pavlo Grechkovskyi, member of the High Council of Justice of Ukraine; Denys Buhai, the co-founder of the VB Partners boutique law firm specializing in White-Collar Crime and Dispute Resolution. He is an expert in the areas of White-collar crime, government relations and corporate law. He has considerable experience in conducting projects in the banking, among them there are: “Delta Bank Ukraine”, “Delta Bank Belarus”, “Khreshchatyk Bank”, “Commercial Bank Premium”, “Classic Bank”, “Terra Bank”, “Omega Bank”, “Expobank”.
Mr. Buhai also represents the interests of senior officials in anti-corruption bodies (National Anti-Corruption Bureau and the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office). His colleagues also characterize Mr. Buhai as an expert on cross-border investigations, extradition and Interpol cases. Oleksii Shevchuk, the co-managing partner of the Barristers Law Firm. Mr. Shevchuk became widely known in Ukraine as a criminal process specialist after his participation in the Korban’s case (famous Ukrainian businessman Hennadii Korban). Oleksii Shevchuk was appointed as a state lawyer from the Coordination Centre for Legal Aid Provision, but he became one of the main defenders in the case. Barristers Law Firm is the result of a successful collaboration of professional lawyers specializing in White-collar crime from the biggest Ukrainian cities - Odesa, Kyiv, Kharkiv and Lviv. The Barristers attorneys are involved in sensitive political trials related to the criminal prosecution of top government officials and former politicians. The Barristers portfolio includes lawsuits related to such clients as the former President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, incumbent mayor of Kyiv Vitalii Klitschko, politicians and businessmen Yaroslav Dubnevych, Oleksandr Onyshchenko and Boryslav Rosenblat. The “Barristers” LA has also managed to attract Ilia Novikov, one of the most respected Russian lawyers.