Several police officers apparently failed honesty tests conducted by the Sme daily in the first half of April after they did not return three of four purses to the original owners which representatives of the daily had delivered to police, saying they had been found.
Four city and four state police departments at police stations in Dunajská Streda, Šaľa and Bratislava-Trnávka failed according to the daily. Purses reappeared in these stations only after Sme informed the Police Corps Presidium and the Interior Ministry inspection office about the results of its test.
Inspectors are already checking the procedure at Trnávka while criminal prosecution has been opened in Šaľa and Dunajská Streda.
“The whole situation is extremely embarrassing,” said Interior Minister Robert Kaliňák, as quoted by Sme, adding that it is likely to result in departure of these people from the police ranks.
The head of Transparency International Slovensko Gabriel Šípoš said that if the police officers really stole the purses they should be immediately dismissed and their names should be made public since their main duty is to protect the property of citizens, not to steal it.
“I am surprised that there obviously is not any electronic registration of found items,” he told Sme, adding that such registration as well as publication on the internet should make handling lost and found items more transparent.
Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports
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