Supreme Court president Štefan Harabin has accused opposition Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ) MP Miroslav Beblavý of lying by accusing him of acquiring a flat in dubious circumstances. Harabin said that Beblavý had not provided any evidence to support his claims.
"A 25-year-old millionaire is lying and deceiving in a gross manner," Harabin said, as quoted by the TASR newswire. In fact, Beblavý is 35 years old. Beblavý recently demanded that parliament's conflicts of interest committee investigate media reports that Harabin had received a 44-percent discount when purchasing an apartment in Bratislava. This allegedly happened in June 2006, when Harabin was an ordinary judge. However, Beblavý alleges that the date on the contract was forged.
Harabin on Wednesday called a press conference at which he showed an original contract bearing the date of June 19, 2006. He stated that in late June 2006 he had arranged a bank loan, and had paid for the flat on July 4. Days later he became justice minister in Robert Fico's first government. Harabin said that he did not consider the low price to be a discount. He said that the purchase was agreed by his wife, and that he only signed the contract. He also made counter-allegations against Beblavý, stating that the MP should provide evidence about how he acquired a house in an upmarket district of Bratislava.
The Sme daily wrote on Thursday, August 2, that Harabin agreed a price of €95,000, including VAT, for the flat in 2006, and purchased it two years later. Now a comparable apartment on the same floor of the same development is priced at €235,000. Harabin says that the price he paid was in compliance with the agreement and that he would have been an idiot not to buy.
Sources: TASR, Sme
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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