Special Prosecutor Kováčik denies speculations over his loan

His bank reported a suspicious bank operation to the police, but they did not deal with the case. The incumbent police corps president may order the case to be re-opened.

Special Prosecutor Dušan KováčikSpecial Prosecutor Dušan Kováčik (Source: TASR)

Special Prosecutor Dušan Kováčik reportedly went to the Slovenská Sporiteľňa bank in September 2017 and deposited €204,000, in cash, into his account. The bank reported the operation to the financial intelligence unit at the Police Corps Presidium, claiming that Kováčik is “an exposed person” and the bank should devote special attention to him, particularly because he should be the first one to fight against corruption and money laundering.

However, the police did not deal with the case, the Denník N daily reported.

At the time, the unit was led by Pavol Vorobjov, a person who is believed to have been involved in the screening of journalist Ján Kuciak shortly before his murder.

Incumbent Police Corps President Milan Lučanský has admitted some deficiencies in the investigation file, which is why he has now ordered its detailed scrutiny. If needed, the case will be reopened, the Police Corps Presidium informed, as reported by Denník N.

The daily also wrote that Kováčik first claimed to have received the money from his brother. The special prosecutor confirmed this in his first statement provided to the media. He added that he had mentioned everything that he was required to in his property disclosure for 2017 and called any speculations concerning the origin of the money, as described by Denník N, as untrue.

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He later altered his statement, claiming that the money came from the legal sale of a property which he will prove after being approached by respective authorities. At the same time, he mentioned the possibility that he would submit a criminal complaint.

“It’s another unprecedented leak of bank secrecy misused to discredit the special prosecutor, which is why the special prosecutor will consider, in the context of deliberately fabricated suspicions, taking legal recourse,” said his spokesperson, Jana Tökölyová, as quoted by Denník N.

Kováčik claims that the loan was given in compliance with valid laws and ethical principles.

A problematic loan

Kováčik reportedly used the money to buy a house for his son Martin. He also stated this was his intention in the bank. The house was bought via a real estate agency. Shortly after depositing the money in the account, he sent it to the person from whom his son bought the house in Pezinok.

The house cost €270,000, with the remaining sum being paid by Kováčik’s son. No mortgage was taken to purchase the property, Denník N wrote.

Kováčik has been publishing his property disclosures since 2012, but has not admitted to such a high amount of money in the documents. He said in the bank that the money came from his brother, Tibor. The same explanation was given to the police. Although scrutiny of his property was to follow, nothing happened.

Kováčik’s brother is active in one company: TI&MA, according to the business register. However, the company has neither such profit nor such revenues to enable them to provide the sum to Kováčik. The same applies to the agricultural collective in which his brother was active in the past.

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Moreover, the family of the special prosecutor’s brother owns properties for which they had to take a mortgage, Denník N wrote.

The daily reported that Kováčik and his wife took a mortgage for a house in Trenčín. His latest property disclosure suggests that he saved €60,000 in cash and owns securities worth about €30,000. He also stated in his 2017 property disclosure that he had taken a new loan, but did not specify the details.

Denník N suggests that the police should have started a proper investigation into the origin of the money from Kováčik’s brother as soon as it had received a report about the transaction from the bank. Under ordinary circumstances, the investigation would be supervised by the Special Prosecutor’s Office, led by Kováčik, since it deals with the fight against corruption and money laundering. It also supervises the investigation of suspicions towards public officials, the daily reported.

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