Slovakia’s top court overturns acquittals for journalist’s murder

The Nation  |  Jun 16, 2021

BRATISLAVA - Slovakia’s Supreme Court on Tuesday overturned the acquittals of a businessman and his suspected accomplice for the murder of a journalist in a case that triggered mass protests and toppled the country’s previous government.

Well-connected multi-millionaire Marian Kocner and his alleged accomplice Alena Zsuzsova will now face a new trial for the murder of Jan Kuciak and his fiancee Martina Kusnirova, who were killed in 2018.

“I am glad that justice will finally prevail. I believe that a new verdict will be more just,” Kuciak’s father Jozef said after the ruling.

In the ruling, judge Peter Paluda said the Supreme Court had found “several mistakes” in the trial and “therefore it returns the case to the lower court”.

The victims, both 27, were gunned down at home gangland-style after Kuciak wrote several stories on graft and the shady dealings by the influential entrepreneur with ties to senior government politicians.

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Reporters Sans Frontieres, an international media watchdog, hailed the ruling saying on Twitter that it was “a step towards truth and justice”. Slovak President Zuzana Caputova said in a statement.

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