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Journalist with confidential VSS documents says police tried to intimidate her

A journalist working for the Hospodárske Noviny daily says that the police tried to intimidate her during a testimony. Martina Tvardzíková Ruttkayová, who came to the police to deliver them confidential material concerning the alleged embezzlement at the Military Intelligence Service (VSS) during the rule of the first Robert Fico government (2006-2010), said that she was subjected to an interrogation during which the police attempted to find out who gave her the documents, the Sme daily reported on June 26.

A journalist working for the Hospodárske Noviny daily says that the police tried to intimidate her during a testimony. Martina Tvardzíková Ruttkayová, who came to the police to deliver them confidential material concerning the alleged embezzlement at the Military Intelligence Service (VSS) during the rule of the first Robert Fico government (2006-2010), said that she was subjected to an interrogation during which the police attempted to find out who gave her the documents, the Sme daily reported on June 26.

“One of them asked me whether for me, as a mother of a child, it is worth meeting with a person like Roman Mikulec,” Tvardzíková Ruttkayová told Sme. Mikulec is the former head of the VSS under whose management the investigation into the alleged tunnelling at the agency started.

The reporter went on to say that when she asked the police to explain the question, they told her Mikulec had been prosecuted. Mikulec was detained by the police on June 23 after they searched his car and reported finding confidential documents. At the moment he faces charges of breaching confidential information, together with his girlfriend Katarína Svrčeková, a former secret service officer, Sme wrote.

Tvardzíková Ruttkayová also said that it was clear from the testimony that the police officers knew she met with Mikulec, as well as when they had spoken over the phone. In addition to this, the reporter said that Police Corps President Tibor Gašpar advised her not to deal with the case, Sme reported.

Gašpar later explained that he told her so because she is personally involved in the case as a witness, and therefore some of her colleagues could replace her in reporting on it, according to Sme.

Based on these claims the opposition plans to summon a special session of the security and defence parliamentary committee. If they collect enough signatures, committee chair Jaroslav Baška will have to arrange it in seven days, Sme reported.

In addition to Tvardzíková Ruttkayová, Miroslav Kern, who works for Sme, also had access to confidential material regarding the case, which he brought to the police.

Meanwhile, the Office of the Special Prosecutor released a statement in which it stated that “regarding the misleading information pertaining to the investigation of the cases connected to the military intelligence which have appeared in media in the past few days, the special prosecutor [Dušan Kováčik] will provide the media with information until the end of the investigation”, the TASR newswire reported.

Source: Sme, TASR

For more information about this story please see: Former VSS military intelligence head and intelligence officer charged, released from custody

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports

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