UPDATED: 4. OCT 2018, AT 22:44

Kuciak murder: One of the accused said that Kočner ordered the murder

Businessman Marian Kočner threatened murdered journalist Ján Kuciak.

Marian KočnerMarian Kočner (Source: TASR)

Zoltán A., one of the four people charged in the case of the murder of investigative journalist Ján Kuciak and his fiancée, Martina Kušnírová, has testified that the murder was ordered by businessman Marián Kočner. The information has been confirmed for the Denník N daily by several sources close to the investigation.

Zoltán A.’s lawyer Lívia Kňažíková confirmed the information to private broadcaster TV Markíza on October 4. However, for another private broadcaster TV JOJ she later denied that she had confirmed anything.

Kočner has not been charged with the murder yet, but the police are collecting the evidence against him, the daily wrote.

Read also:Threats, scandals, and dubious political ties. Who is Marian Kočner? Read more 

Meanwhile, Kočner was transported from Bratislava’s Judicial Palace to the prison in Leopoldov on October 2.

The only one who collaborates

Zoltán A., a businessman from Komárno whom the police described as a go-between in the case, reportedly said in his testimony that one of the others accused, Alena Zs., told him that the murder was ordered by Kočner.

Read also:An unknown translator, a man who owes a million on taxes Read more 

Alena Zs., described as a person who gave order for the murder, subsequently turned to Zoltán A. The shooter was, according to the investigators, Tomáš S., while Miroslav M. is said to have driven him to Veľká Mača, where Kuciak and Kušnírová lived, Denník N wrote.

So far, Zoltán A. is the only one of the accused testifying about the case and cooperating with the law enforcement bodies. It is very probable that by doing so he will reduce his sentence by several years, Denník N wrote.

Kočner’s threats

As the media informed earlier, Kočner threatened Kuciak last autumn, claiming he would throw dirt on him. Kuciak responded by submitting a criminal complaint. The police first did not deal with, and later said that the threat could not even be classified as a minor offence.

At the very first press conference held after Kuciak’s murder, journalists asked then-Police Corps president Tibor Gašpar about Kočner. However, he rejected the accusations that the police had not done anything to solve the suspicions concerning certain people. Gašpar responded that if a journalist came asking for help, they would certainly act.

When asked about Kočner’s threats towards Kuciak, Gašpar responded that “if I had concrete information, I would answer you”, as reported by Denník N.

Kočner criticised journalists for their questions concerning the threats at a press conference held one day later. In the meantime, he started attacking journalists in conspiracy media, Denník N wrote.

Read also:The price of Ján Kuciak's head was €70,000 Read more 

Who is Kočner?

Kočner has been on the scene since the November 1989 revolution. His name appeared on the so-called mafia lists, but he has always acted as someone who cannot be touched. He was close to the representatives of the ruling Smer party, and even did business with Ladislav Bašternák, who now faces charges for tax fraud, Denník N wrote.

Moreover, he was also on friendly terms with former general prosecutor Dobroslav Trnka. The cases that involved him often ended with the statement that the deed did not happen or that it cannot be classified as a crime. After several media, including Kuciak, reported about the police ignoring serious evidence against Kočner, things started to change.

Kočner was detained in June due to suspicions of falsifying promissory notes for private broadcaster TV Markíza. Since then, he has been held in custody. Even though he has asked for release, the Supreme Court confirmed with its verdict that he has to stay in custody. Kočner's complaint was also addressed and rejected by the Constitutional Court, Denník N wrote.

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