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Archbishop’s libel lawsuit dismissed

TRNAVA’S archbishop emeritus Ján Sokol will receive neither financial compensation nor an apology from the Týždeň weekly, Trnava Regional Court ruled on May 15, the SITA newswire reported.

TRNAVA’S archbishop emeritus Ján Sokol will receive neither financial compensation nor an apology from the Týždeň weekly, Trnava Regional Court ruled on May 15, the SITA newswire reported.

Sokol sued the weekly’s publisher W Press for libel and demanded €50,000 in damages for a series of articles published in the weekly in 2009 which reported that Sokol transferred Sk500 million (around €16.5 million) from the sale of Church-owned lands to the private account of Štefan Náhlik, an alleged former communist secret police agent. Sokol denies the allegation.

The Trnava District Court ruled against Sokol in March 2012, and its ruling was confirmed on May 15, 2013 by the regional court, whose ruling is final and cannot be appealed.

Sokol is now required to pay bout €140 in court fees to W Press, according to SITA.

“I have always claimed that we published only a small part of the dark workings of Mr Sokol,”

Týždeň’s editor-in-chief, Štefan Hríb, told SITA. “The following development and mainly the way his successor, Róbert Bezák, who wanted to make order in the economy of the diocese, was recalled, only confirmed that.”

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