"The probe into Viktor Yanukovich was closed in compliance with [Ukrainian Criminal Procedural Code], which stipulates that if the grounds for pre-trial investigation in absentia 'stopped existing,' from then on, the pre-trial probe is carried out according to the standard procedure," Aver Lex law firm said in a statement, citing the ex-president's lawyer, Vitaliy Serdyuk.
According to Serdyuk, the Prosecutor General of Ukraine received confirmation of Yanukovych's current residence address from their Russian counterparts, and therefore had no reason to carry out the probe in absentia.
"Any attempts to continue conducting investigation in absentia will be a crime and a breach of a person's right to defense, guaranteed under the Ukrainian and international law," Serdyuk was quoted as saying.
In late November 2016, Yanukovych testified in the case of the 2014 Maidan uprising in Ukraine via a video conference with Kiev. During the hearing, it was announced that the former president was suspected of treason.
Mass protests erupted in Ukraine after Yanukovych refused to sign an association agreement with the European Union. The Yanukovych's government was toppled in February 2014, after months of protests in Kiev's landmark Maidan square.
During the clashes between the security forces and the protesters, more than 100 people died. New Ukrainian authorities headed by President Petro Poroshenko put the blame on Yanukovych.
Yanukovych, who is currently residing in Russia, testified in the case of the 2014 Maidan uprising through a video linkup with Kiev. During the hearing, it was announced that Yanukovych was suspected of treason.