Topic

Kuciak murder trial

Investigative reporter Ján Kuciak was killed in his house in Veľká Mača. His fiancée Martina Kušnírová was shot dead along with him. Very soon after their dead bodies were discovered on February 26, 2018, the police said that the murder was most likely linked to Kuciak’s journalistic work.  Unlike most cases of murdered journalists in the world, the police detained and charged not just the persons whom they believe to have fired the shots, but also those who ordered the murder.

The trial with Marián Kočner, Alena Zsuzsová, Tomáš Szabó and Miroslav Marček started on January 13, 2020. Zoltán Andruskó, who has admitted to having acted as the middleman between those who ordered the murder and those who executed it, was sentenced to 15 years in prison on December 30, 2019 in a separate proceeding, based on his plea bargain deal. He has thus become an important witness in the case against the four persons. 

On September 3, 2020, the senate of the Specialised Criminal Court delivered its verdict in the case. Szabó has been found guilty and sentenced to 25 years in a maximum-security prison. Marian Kočner and Alena Zsuzsová were acquitted of charges related to the murders. 

>>> Who was Ján Kuciak and how did he become a journalist?

>>> What was the development on the Slovak political scene in the immediate days after the murder?

>>> Slovakia: Timeline of events during the first year after the murder >>> Who are the people charged in the murder case?

>>> How the trial went in its initial days (overview)

>>> Read more about how the Kuciak case changed Slovakia 

>>> The doubts that played in favour of Kočner (analysis of the verdict)

The Supreme Court issues stricter punishment for gunman in the Kuciak murder case

Miroslav Marček was sentenced to 25 years in prison.Compiled by Spectator staff, 2. Dec 2020, at 12:01

Miroslav Marček

Kočner had no motive. The written Kuciak case verdict is a surprise

The court does not trust Peter Tóth and questions the role of middleman Andruskó.Adam Valček, 7. Oct 2020, at 15:04

Marian Kočner escorted to the courtroom on September 3 to hear the verdict.
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Former main investigator of the Kuciak murder returns after the verdict

Experts say the prosecutor might have missed the support of a strong team of police investigators during the trial.Peter Kováč8. Sep 2020, at 14:27

Peter Juhás, former head of the police team that investigated the Kuciak murder case.
Last Week in Slovakia

No end to impunity yet. How the verdict will affect Slovakia

The verdict in the Kuciak murder trial dominated the news last week and has further divided Slovakia.Michaela Terenzani, 7. Sep 2020, at 12:49

The families of Ján Kuciak and Martina Kušnírová after the verdict.

Kuciak verdict: The doubts that played in favour of Kočner (analysis)

There are several points in the murder story that the court says the prosecutors have not proven beyond reasonable doubt.Adam Valček, 4. Sep 2020, at 16:59

Marian Kočner in court

The verdict is unjust, we are disappointed, say parents of Kuciak and Kušnírová

Lawyer for the Kuciak family, Daniel Lipšic, considers the verdict incorrect.Compiled by Spectator staff, 3. Sep 2020, at 18:17

Jozef Kuciak and Zlatica Kušnírová

The verdict is not the result of sloppy work, court president says

Specialised Criminal Court President Ján Hrubala admits judges make mistakes too, but is convinced that the judges in the Kuciak case tried to do their job the best they could.Compiled by Spectator staff, 3. Sep 2020, at 17:48

Specialised Criminal Court President Ján Hrubala after the Kuciak murder verdict.

What the verdict in the Kuciak murder case means for the prosecution

The Supreme Court cannot simply overturn the verdict.Roman Cuprik, 3. Sep 2020, at 17:36

Marian Kočner and his lawyer Marek Para.

Photo series from the Kuciak murder trial chosen as the best of Slovak Press Photo

Photographer of the Denník N daily called the series The Trail.Compiled by Spectator staff, 3. Sep 2020, at 12:28

Tomáš Benedikovič and his work

Shock and shame. Slovakia responds to the verdict in the Kuciak murder case

Politicians, non-governmental sector and journalists ask for the fight for justice to continue.Compiled by Spectator staff, 3. Sep 2020, at 12:12

Marian Kočner escorted to the courtroom on September 3 to hear the verdict.

Kuciak murder verdict: Kočner and Zsuzsová not guilty

The verdict is not valid yet. The prosecutor appealed.Compiled by Spectator staff, 3. Sep 2020, at 10:38

Kuciak's family leaving the court after "not guilty" verdict for Marian Kočner and Alena Zsuzsová.
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Murder of journalist: Slovakia awaits an historic verdict on Thursday

Defendants in the Kuciak murder case will hear the court ruling in September after the half-year trial.Compiled by Spectator staff, 2. Sep 2020, at 13:32

Marian Kočner, charged with ordering the murder of Ján Kuciak, during which also Martina Kušnírová was killed.
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Defendants in the Kuciak murder trial do not have to learn their verdict on Thursday

New evidence proposed by the prosecutor’s office.Compiled by Spectator staff, 2. Sep 2020, at 12:14

Alena Zsuzsová
Today in Slovakia

News digest: Verdict in the Kuciak murder trial postponed

Read your overview of news from Slovakia on Tuesday, August 4, 2020.Compiled by Spectator staff, 4. Aug 2020, at 17:42

Marian Kočner
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Kočner: I am not a saint, but nor am I a murderer

Closing speeches of the defendants and defence lawyers have been delivered, verdict in the Kuciak murder case expected next week.Compiled by Spectator staff, 31. Jul 2020, at 17:51

Last Week in Slovakia

PM bungled his latest thesis defence, MPs let him pass

Amid talks of how Slovakia is becoming more knowledge-based and innovative, the prime minister shows ever more fervently that he does not hold intellectual property in high regard.Michaela Terenzani, 27. Jul 2020, at 12:01

PM Igor Matovič
Today in Slovakia

News digest: Kuciak murder trial ends, attempt to oust Matovič starts

Read your overview of news from Slovakia on Thursday, July 23.Compiled by Spectator staff, 23. Jul 2020, at 17:52

The empty seats of OĽaNO MPs.

Kuciak murder trial is over, punishment has been proposed

The prosecution of the people who are believed to have ordered and executed the murder of Ján Kuciak and Martina Kušnírová took 21 trial days.Compiled by Spectator staff, 23. Jul 2020, at 17:20

Marian Kočner

Kuciak murder trial culminates: A convict points at Bödör, accuses him of fabricating a cover story

Businessman close to Smer, Norber Bödör, is currently in custody for another case. Andruskó points a finger at him and says he has covered up the murder.Roman CuprikAdam Valček, 21. Jul 2020, at 20:30

Zoltán Andruskó in court.
Today in Slovakia

Monday news digest: Renegade Pellegrini’s party popular, his ex-boss confirms at top Smer post

Read the overview of news from Monday, July 20, 2020.Compiled by Spectator staff, 20. Jul 2020, at 17:49

Robert Fico (centre) and his newly elected deputy chairs.
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