American farmer Kurt Groszhans accused of plotting kidnap and assassination of Ukrainian government minister
Jan 21, 2022 1 min, 34 secs
If convicted, Groszhans could be sentenced to life in prison, though Ustimenko said a sentence between 12 and 15 years was more likely. .

Groszhans also claimed that Leshchenko later made a large contribution to the political party led by Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who went on to become Ukraine's president.

Leshchenko's lawyer, Tetyana Kozachenko, told CBS News that the funds lent to him by Groszhans were "returned in full," and that the dispute was related to "business transactions.".

Groszhans was arrested on November 18, 2021, his attorney told CBS News.

Ustimenko said the police claimed to have recordings of Groszhans' then-assistant, a Ukrainian woman named Olena Bogach, meeting with "other people" whom Ustimenko said appeared to be police informants, discussing "how to get money from Mr.

According to Ustimenko, however,  Groszhans was rarely present during those conversations and even when he was, he could hardly speak Russian or Ukrainian, so without receiving the alleged audio files, Groszhans and his legal team couldn't "know what exactly was translated to him," or what prosecutors claimed he had said in those meetings.

According to Ustimenko, Groszhans said that while he was visiting the restaurant where the final meeting took place on November 17, "he was poisoned with psychotropic substances" and couldn't understand where he was or what was happening.

Groszhans' legal team said investigators had denied their request to test his blood samples. .

But I want to say this:  If someone thinks that the threats, assassination, blackmail or physical removal of the Minister of Agrarian Policy will allow him to avoid legal responsibility, then I can assure you that it is not the case," Leshchenko told CBS News partner network BBC News

On January 5, a Ukrainian district court denied a motion to transfer Groszhans to house arrest, his lawyer said

Ustimenko said he hoped to receive a transcript from investigators before that hearing of Groszhan's remarks during the restaurant meeting with undercover police

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