Top supreme court justice faces violence charges

Deputy Chairman of the Supreme Court Jozef Štefanko will be taken to court on charges of destruction of property and physical attack on authority, the SITA news agency reported June 14.

The Justice Ministry is suing Štefanko for illegally trespassing into an apartment owned by the Ministry which he had used in the past. The Ministry claimed that Štefanko refused to pay the rent and then refused to vacate the apartment. When the Ministry changed the lock on the apartment's entrance door, Štefanko took an axe and broke in, claiming he had to get his personal things, said Daniel Lipšic, administrative office chief of the Justice Ministry.

Later, Štefanko had an argument with the Ministry's finance department head Štefan Nozdrovický in which he grabbed his colleague by his throat and attempted to hit him. Nozdrovický accused Štefanko of assault.

As he is the second highest executive judge in the country, legal proceedings against Štefanko have to be approved by the Constitutional Court before an investigation can begin. If found guilty, Štefanko would be deprived of his deputy chairmanship as well as his judgeship.

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