Who at the police is providing the media with sensitive information to discredit former executives of DUTB?

Drago Kos (Foto: STA)

There are more and more allegations from the public that the Monday media operation concerning accusations against deputy Andrej Šircelj and former DUTB Executive Director Tjorbjörn Mansson from Sweden is a joint project of the Slovenian National Bureau of Investigation and POP TV in order to slander the two of them as much as possible. The reason for these actions seems to be the approaching decision of the Constitutional Court of Slovenia concerning the appeal of the Slovenian Democratic Party (SDS) with regards to the intrusion of the police into Šircelj’s e-mail. 

On Monday evening, the commercial television channel POP TV exclusively revealed the unofficial news that the Slovenian National Bureau of Investigation (NPU) had made accusations against former executives of the Bank Asset Management Company (DUTB). According to unofficial information, NPU suspects the abuse of power since the executives had allegedly paid for expensive fictional consultancy contracts of foreign companies. Former DUTB Executive Director Torbjörn Mansson and former DUTB Chairman of the Board of Directors and current deputy of the National Assembly of Slovenia Andrej Šircelj are reportedly among the accused as well.

Since we have verified the matter with the parties involved, we have every reason to suspect that it is a carefully prepared operation within the traditional partnership of this media house and the police. The people that are most often mentioned in this regard are the former informant Drago Kos, who has many connections at the police, and his wife Tjaša Slokar, who is an editor at POP TV. Everyone involved, from the reportedly accused Šircelj to his advocate Franci Matoz were not aware of the charges and only know of the matter from the media. The National Bureau of Investigation (NPU) has also failed to confirm the charges.

What is the police afraid of?
If it turns out that this is an arranged media operation of the police and the media house POP TV, it will undoubtedly cause a great scandal that will show the already very politicised Slovenian police in a bad light. Such a cooperation of the police and the leaking of sensitive and important information to servile members of the media is definitely not within the purview of their independent investigations and operations since it would seem that they are using the media solely to additionally discredit the people they are investigating. In the past, there have already been many other vile examples of cooperation and media directing of operations by the police.

One possible explanation for such an incestuous relationship with a desire for media persecution is related to the approaching decision of the Constitutional Court. Members of the National Assembly of Slovenia have appealed to the court with regards to the investigation of the office and electronic devices of deputy Šircelj. Given the fact that the Constitutional Court specifically addressed the case at its 33rd session of 14 December 2016, we can expect a final decision shortly. Therefore, we can assume that the operation of the police and POP TV was not random, but was carefully planned and prepared in order to additionally discredit the former executives of DUTB before the decision of the Constitutional Court.

The police operation was condemned even by Milan Brglez
The story continued with the order of the examining judge Deša Cener, who ordered a seizure and investigation of servers at SDS, where they searched for a letter by Andrej Šircelj due to developments at DUTB. That the judge did not target Širclj alone (because of the DUTB case) but the whole SDS party was clear from the order to the police, in which she demanded the seizure and securing as well as examination and inspection of all electronic data, electronic messages, communication data, and other data located on servers, cloud services, backups, and other storage media used by SDS. At the time, Šircelj explained very clearly that he does not have an office or even a computer at the headquarters of the party.

Numerous lawyers, among them also the current judge from the European Court of Human Rights Marko Bošnjak, designated the investigation as an extremely sensitive step in light of the principle of proportionality. That such an intrusion into the electronic communication of the legislative branch of the government is inadmissible was also mentioned at the time by President of the National Assembly Milan Brglez. Because of the concrete intrusion of the police into the legislative branch of the government, members of the National Assembly, lead by deputy Anja Bah Žibert, have appealed to the Constitutional Court, which should issue a decision shortly. Based on the latest developments concerning the police and the opinions of lawyers, it is not difficult to guess what the final decision might be.

M. P.