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High-ranking Slovak politician resigns over links to Kocner

Bratislava, Slovakia – Martin Glvac, the deputy-speaker of the Slovak Parliament, has resigned last week over his links to Marian Kocner, the high-profile businessman suspected of having ordered the murder of investigative journalist Jan Kuciak.

Slovak Parliament deputy-head resigns over Kuciak murder case

Member of the ruling Smer party, Glvac is the highest-ranking official to resign as part of the ongoing investigation into last year’s gruesome murder.

Although he admitted having contacts with Kocner, Glvac denied any wrongdoing and has challenged every other politician who had links with the businessman, including Most-Hid chairman Bela Bugar, to follow his example.

He also pointed the finger at Boris Kollar, head of the Sme Rodina party, whom he claims introduced him to Kocner in the first place.

President Zuzana Caputova had called for his resignation the previous day, along with a number of politicians who were planning on holding a vote of no-confidence against Glvac.

String of resignations of high-ranking Slovak officials over links to Kocner

Last month, Marian Kocner and three others, suspected of having carried out the hit, were officially charged by Slovak prosecutors for the murder of the young reporter. A fifth man, suspected of having facilitated the murder, has reportedly struck a deal with investigators and agreed to act as a witness in the other four’s trial.

Glvac’s head is not the first to roll, however, as the ongoing investigation into the murder of Kuciak and his fiancee continues to reveal Kocner’s extensive reach and contacts at the highest level of public office and government.

In August, public prosecutors announced they had retrieved and were examining thousands of messages and private communications from Kocner’s phone. Publication of part of them in Slovak media has led, over the past months, to a number of resignations from top public officials, including two prosecutors, one judge and Slovakia’s deputy-Justice Minister, Monika Jankowska.

The ongoing investigation and impending trial are likely to have a significant influence on the outcome of the upcoming parliamentary elections, scheduled for late February.

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