National

Son hopes MH17 trial will expose Russia

By AAP Newswire

A Queensland man who lost his parents when flight MH17 was shot out of the sky says he hopes Russia's lies will finally be exposed when four alleged mass murderers face trial.

Paul Guard holds little hope that four men Dutch investigators plan to charge over the atrocity will actually appear at their trial in the The Hague next year.

But he says there will be immense value in the process anyway, including shining a light on the untruths Russia has peddled.

"They have a lot of evidence they still haven't been able to share with people," Mr Guard told ABC radio on Thursday.

"What a lot of families find really hard is all these conspiracy theories, official theories from the Russian government, that conflict with what the joint investigation team is telling us.

"It's disappointing to see the Russian government both not co-operating and also putting out a lot of disinformation. That's probably been a very hard thing for all of us."

MH17 was downed in July 2014, with a surface to air missile investigators say was brought over the border from Russia.

In all, 298 people died including 38 Australians. Mr Guard's parents, Roger and Jill, were among them along with Jack O'Brien, 25.

Mr O'Brien's mother says its important justice is done but won't alter the reality of living without her son.

"For us, I guess it's just another step along the way," Meryn O'Brien told the ABC in Sydney.

"One one hand, it doesn't make any difference to us living without Jack every day, and the same for the other people. But is it important the truth comes out? Of course it is."

The aircraft came down in a field in a part of eastern Ukraine held by pro-Russia separatists. Moscow has always denied involvement, with President Vladimir Putin saying there were other explanations.

Three Russian men with military and intelligence service backgrounds and a fourth from the Ukraine are to be charged after a long running international investigation involving Australia.

It's alleged the four men were responsible for getting the missile into Ukraine.

It is likely the men will be tried in absentia because Russia and Ukraine do not extradite nationals to face criminal proceedings.

Former foreign minister Julie Bishop, who handled the aftermath of the attack, says families will be relieved to hear the names and see the faces of those accused of killing their loved ones.

"Russia has long waged a disinformation campaign against the joint investigation team," she told the ABC.

"There have been cyber attacks targeting the investigation."