Italian journalist: Slovak police have been investigating Vadala since 2013

The authorities were aware of the activities of Ndrangheta in eastern Slovakia years ago, says Maria Grazia Mazzola.

Maria Grazia MazzolaMaria Grazia Mazzola (Source: Archive of MGM)

There are phone calls that concern top representatives of Slovak politics and Antonino Vadala, the man who faces charges of drug trafficking in Italy and is reportedly related to the Italian underworld group, 'Ndrangheta.

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Read also: A murderer, an MP, a model: Who is who in the case Kuciak was investigating Read more 

Italian journalist Maria Grazia Mazzola who has been dealing with the Kuciak case, confirmed this for the Sme daily.

Mazzolla claims that the Slovak police have known about Antonino Vadala and the system of 'Ndrangheta in Slovakia since as early as 2013.

Slovak police knew about 'Ndrangheta years ago

"In 2013, the Slovak police investigated the illegal use of EU funds by Vadala and other Italian entrepreneurs," Mazzola told Sme. "They also had relationships with Slovak investigators. That cannot be denied. I have read it."

Read also: Kaliňák misled: police received info on Vadala 5 years ago Read more 

Sme contacted Italian journalists with questions about the phone call between Fico and Vadala that La Repubblica and Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) wrote about. Fico has denied having ever spoken with Vadala on the phone and he told journalists that Italian prosecutors have confirmed to the Slovak Embassy in Rome that no information about such a phone call exists.

Both Mazzola, who works for the Italian public-service broadcaster RAI, and Carlo Bonini from La Repubblica, confirmed the existence of the phone call for Sme.

Fico kept Trošková close, despite her ties with Vadala

Prosecutor Gaetano Calogero Paci from the office in Reggio Calabria, Italy, did not disprove this in his statement for Sme either. He said he did not care what Fico is saying. He explained that prosecutors must remain impartial and "lead investigations, not journalistic polemics".

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Mazzola explained for Sme that Italian prosecutors are not allowed by law to talk about information concerning investigations.

She did however stress that the Slovak police investigated the use of EU funds for agriculture in Slovakia by ten entrepreneurs, including Vadala.

"Jan Kuciak found a very important link between the EU funds and these entrepreneurs," Mazzola said. She stressed that the question of how that investigation ended remains unanswered. "But there's more: How could the Slovak government be so uninformed that they did not know who Vadala was and how could the prime minister [Fico] have [Mária] Trošková next to him when she had links to Vadala? The Slovak police knew that in 2013. This calls for consequences to be faced."

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