A proposal to have Prime Minister Iveta Radičová's former external advisor Martin Novotný remanded in custody was submitted by the Office for the Fight Against Corruption on Thursday, August 18, the TASR newswire reported, citing police spokesperson Denisa Baloghová. The investigator from the Office for Fight Against Corruption submitted a proposal to take Novotný into custody on Thursday.
Interior Minister Daniel Lipšic said at a press conference on Wednesday, August 17, that Novotný had been charged with corruption concerning subsidies for construction of the biathlon venue in Osrblie (Banská Bystrica Region). According to Lipšic, Novotný returned to Slovakia on Wednesday from a holiday in the USA and reported for questioning.
On August 10, Radičová announced that construction of the facilities in Osrblie, which is supposed to host the 2012 European Biathlon Championships, won't be financed from the state budget as originally planned due to corruption. Originally, the state was supposed to provide €1.6 million for reconstruction work.
According to Lipšic, three other people have already been charged with corruption-related offences after being arrested while accepting a bribe of €30,000 in late July. Lipšic estimates that the case could be resolved by the end of the year. "It would be premature to go into the details of the case at this point," he said. Novotný is the fourth person to be charged in the case. The most prominent of the other three, former ambassador and senior public servant Igor Líška, is in custody on remand – a status determined by, among other things, his assessed flight risk and the possibility that he might attempt to influence other witnesses in the case. Businessman Peter Kňazík and a fourth man stand accused in the case as well, the SITA newswire wrote. If convicted, they could face sentences of up to three years.
Sources: TASR, SITA
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
19. Aug 2011 at 10:00