Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

Lawyers cannot assist police in uncovering corruption

LAWYERS cannot accept the role of police agents even if it is to help uncover corruption, according to a ruling by the Supreme Court.

The court ruled yesterday that Mária Mešencová, a lawyer from Piešťany, was wrong to have helped police snare another lawyer who had offered her a bribe to help influence a verdict. According to the court, in accepting the role Mešencová has placed her to some extent under police control, which prevented her from freely and independently defending the interests of her clients.

At the same time, however, the Supreme Court overturned an earlier decision by the Slovak Bar to expel Mešencová, which would have meant that she could never again have worked as a lawyer.

The verdict was criticized by anti-corruption watchdogs as encouraging corruption in the legal system.

Emília Sičáková-Beblavá of the Transparency International Slovakia NGO told the Pravda daily that the decision “will not help expose corruption among lawyers.

“Both this case and various polls suggest that corruption among lawyers exists,” she said.

Back in 2004, police arrested lawyer Pavol Prokopovič as he was handing a Sk100,000 bribe to Mešencová, who was acting as a police agent. Prokopovič had promised Mešencová the money in return for convincing her client to change his testimony to benefit one of Prokopovič’s clients.

In November 2006, the Special Court for organized crime and corruption found Pavol Prokopovič guilty, and gave him a two-year suspended sentence.

According to Sičáková-Beblavá, the Slovak Bar is unwilling to confront corruption in its ranks and is putting the interests of its members over those of the public.

Top stories

How the national emblem appeared – including so far secret communism designs

Even Slovaks often do not know why the national emblem depicts a white double-cross, and not the Kriváň peak, or the design by artist Vincent Hložník. They also do not know why it makes a difference whether it is…

Offical Slovak national emblem and colours

Bratislava Zoo will have new wolf breeding station

One of most significant investments of the Bratislava Zoo in the year 2017 will be the building of a new wolf breeding station.

Foreigners: Events around Slovakia Photo

Tips for performances and other events in the Slovak regions between February 17 and February 26, including a race on old wooden sleighs, an operetta premiere, a lot of jazz, classical and rock music, and more.

Rce in krňačky sleighing, Turecká 2017

Some food really is better in Austria, study finds

EC says its role is to monitor safety, not quality – but Slovaks want the same as Austrians, says minister.

Illustrative stock photo