A SPECIAL Court became operational in Pezinok (Bratislava Region) on July 1, Justice Minister Daniel Lipšic told journalists, the TASR news wire reported.
Along with the Special Prosecutor's Office, it will decide on cases of organized crime, corruption and the most serious financial and property-related crimes.
"The most important role of the state is to protect society. This is the main role of both the Special Court and the Special Prosecutor's Office," the minister declared during the opening ceremony for the headquarters of both institutions.
"All the documents from the Regional Court were delivered to the Special Court today. They were allocated to individual judges," the head of the Special Court Igor Králik told journalists.
According to Králik, the court is dealing with 24 cases, including four custodial cases that will be given priority. Králik expects that the first hearing, probably concerning the so-called "acid-bath murderers", will take place in late August or the beginning of September.
There are three courtrooms currently available, two with a separate room for the public, who will be able to watch the proceedings from behind glass screens. Windows made from reinforced glass, which is bullet proof from a certain distance, protect the building. The glass is not transparent from the outside.
Ján Packa, director of The Office for the Protection of Constitutional Officials, called the complex in Pezinok one of the four best-protected buildings in Slovakia.
There will be 11 judges working at the Special Court as of July 1, including five who have been temporarily transferred from the Regional Court. In order to fill six vacancies for special judges, the institution is inviting suitable candidates to send in application forms. Nine prosecutors already work at the Special Prosecutor's Office, while another 11 have applied for posts.
Protected housing for the judges and prosecutors will be provided in the form of 14 family houses at the Pezinok complex. The building work will cost around Sk45 million (€1.17 million).
Compiled by Marta Ďurianová from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
4. Jul 2005 at 10:46