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Ukraine Names Suspects In Gongadze Murder

Heorhiy Gongadze (file photo) 8 August 2005 -- Ukrainian prosecutors said today they have identified three police officers they believe were responsible for the murder of investigative journalist Heorhiy Gongadze five years ago.

The Prosecutor-General's Office said in a statement that Valeriy Kostenko, Mykola Protasov, and Oleksandr Popovych allegedly abducted and beheaded Gongadze in September 2000.

It is unclear whether the three men are currently in police custody.

A fourth suspect, Oleksiy Pukach, is being sought on an international warrant.

Prosecutors say they will begin investigating who gave the order for the journalist's death once they conclude the probe into his killers.

The death of Gongadze, who wrote about high-level corruption, sparked allegations that then-President Leonid Kuchma masterminded the murder.

Kuchma has denied any connection to the killing.