The National Criminal Agency (NAKA) has returned the seized mobile phone to Czech reporter Pavla Holcová of the Czech Centre for Investigative Journalism, the Sme daily wrote.
Holcová informed about the return herself on social networks.
“My Slovak lawyer took over the envelope with my mobile,” she wrote on Facebook. “Thank everyone for their support – it would not have been possible without you.”Last Week in Slovakia: Police seized Kuciak's colleague's phone Read more
As of June 4, it is not clear whether police copied data from the phone. NAKA took the mobile from Holcová May 15, after an 8-hour interrogation. Then, the journalist arrived in Slovakia to testify voluntarily, to help solve the murder of her colleague from the centre, Ján Kuciak.
The order to copy her data came from a prosecutor who is not even involved in investigating Kuciak’s murder – and the overseeing prosecutor has not explained until now why he did so. Nor did he say why he demanded data from Holcová’s mobile from January 1, 2016, i.e. more than two years ago.Washington Post reporter outraged that journalist’s phone was seized by Slovak police Read more
Moreover, police just had instructions to copy the data saved, and lacked the order to download data via mobile from email boxes, for example, or other communication apps.
The Association of Press Publishers and international journalistic organisations strongly criticised the seizing of the mobile phone.