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Former Rača mayor gets five years for corruption

THE SPECIAL Court for organized and political crime has sentenced Pavol Bielik, the former mayor of Rača district in Bratislava, to five years in prison on corruption charges.

Bielik, a former senior official with the opposition Christian Democrats, was also banned from holding public office for seven years, and was fined Sk500,000 in the court’s ruling yesterday.

Bielik’s accomplice, businessman Jaroslav Šuščák, was sentenced to 4.5 years in jail. Both men appealed the verdicts.

In January 2004, Šuščák demanded Sk5 million from Pavol Kollár of the Invest In company in exchange for securing local council approval for Kollár’s plans to reconstruct a building and erect two new buildings in Rača.

Kollár told the court that Šuščák repeatedly warned him that if he didn’t give the money to the mayor, his investment plans in Rača would not be approved.

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