Feb 16 (Reuters) – A Slovak prosecutor filed charges against Slovak central bank governor and European Central Bank policymaker Peter Kazimir over bribery allegations, TASR news agency and other local media reported on Thursday.
The prosecutor’s office said on its Facebook page that charges were filed against an individual, P.K., without naming him directly. Kazimir has denied any wrongdoing in connection with the allegations. The central bank declined to comment.
“The indictment concerns suspicion of corrupt criminal activity in connection with tax audits against several commercial companies,” the prosecutor’s statement said.
In October 2021 the euro zone country’s Special Prosecutor’s office charged Kazimir with a “corruption-related crime” but withdrew the charge last June pending a review.
In November Slovak police resurrected the charge and prosecutors took it up to prepare an indictment.
View 2 more stories
Kazimir’s lawyer, Ondrej Mularcik, declined immediate comment on Thursday, saying he had not received any charges from prosecutors.
Kazimir, who was finance minister from 2012 to 2019 and was nominated as central bank governor by the leftist SMER party, said through his lawyer last year that “the governor does not feel guilty” and had committed no crime.
In October 2021 Slovak news website www.aktuality.sk, citing several unidentified sources, reported that Kazimir was charged in a case related to an alleged bribe for a former Slovak tax administration chief, who had been charged in several cases and was then cooperating with investigators.
The news website said Kazimir was accused of being a “courier” who carried a bribe of some 50,000 euros ($53,370) related to unspecified tax proceedings to the tax chief. It was not clear from the report where the money allegedly came from.
($1 = 0.9369 euros)
Reporting by Jason Hovet in Prague; editing by Alison Williams and Mark Heinrich
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.