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Court returns the platinum mesh case to the prosecutor

THE BRATISLAVA I District Court dismissed the lawsuit against three men charged in the platinum mesh case for procedural mistakes and returned it to the prosecutor. The judges missed, for example, the reference to the place where the alleged crime happened which may affect the selection of the court that will decide over the case.

THE BRATISLAVA I District Court dismissed the lawsuit against three men charged in the platinum mesh case for procedural mistakes and returned it to the prosecutor. The judges missed, for example, the reference to the place where the alleged crime happened which may affect the selection of the court that will decide over the case.

The decision is still not valid as the prosecutor appealed it, the SITA newswire reported on November 11.

The case goes back to October 2011 when media outlets reported that the Administration of State Material Reserves (SŠHR), led at the time by Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ) nominee Eva Hrinková, repeatedly broke the law when selling platinum mesh to a company belonging to Michal Hudoba, an SDKÚ candidate in the 2006 general elections. The inspection found that it broke the law when it invited possible bidders to take part in the sale via the web. Moreover, it acted illegally when selecting an expert to assess the value of the platinum being sold, the Sme daily wrote in 2011. The platinum mesh is probably already abroad.

The case resulted in Hrinková leaving her post in November 2011.

The police charged three men: the head of the committee to open and evaluate bids in electronic auctions, a member of the committee and a machinery expert.

The prosecutor of the regional prosecution in Bratislava submitted the lawsuits against Juraj L., Ján K. and Ondrej B. in May 2014 for violating their duties when administering someone else’s property as well as for false expert opinion, translation and interpretation. The investigation file has about 3,400 pages. According to the investigator, the damages for SŠHR in this case exceed €2.2 million, as reported by SITA.

The expert assessed the general value of the platinum mesh at €81,270, ignoring the fact that the material for the production is platinum and rhodium. The SŠHR then sold them to the private company for €667,656, though their real value was at least €2,895,490, SITA wrote.

Source: SITA, Sme

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports

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