Oligarch Alina Zsuzova is sentenced for the murder of Slovak journalist Kuciak

The three-judge panel of the Pezinok Court, which repeated the trial for the murder of journalist Jan Kuciak and his girlfriend Martina Kusnirova, four years after the double crime, found the husbands of powerful businessman Marianne Konner, Alina Zsuzova, guilty. While he was again acquitted for lack of evidence.

Zsuzsova was found guilty of participating in both the conspiracy to assassinate the journalist and also plans to assassinate public prosecutor Maros Jelinka and Peter Sovliaski. Cockner, however, Get away from feeling guilty again, although he is already serving a 19-year prison sentence for various offenses that came to light during the investigation into the journalist’s death. Zsuzova, who is also imprisoned, gets an additional 25 years.

Kuciak and his accomplice were murdered in their home in Failaka Maka on February 21, 2018, when the journalist was working on several corruption cases. A posthumous article containing his findings sparked massive protests in Slovakia and the resignation of Prime Minister Fico, plunging the country into a political crisis that continues to this day. Slovakia is now ruled by a cabinet of technocrats who are awaiting elections in the fall that could return Fico to power.

The main author of the bullets, former soldier Miroslav Marczyk and two of his accomplices, were convicted. Kočner and Zsuszsova were suspects from the start, but in September 2020 they reached their first acquittal for lack of evidence. Less than a year later, in June 2021, the Supreme Court of Slovakia accepted the appeal from the prosecutor’s office and revoked the pardon, forcing the court to a second trial. Both were meanwhile convicted of other crimes.

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Judge Rosina Sabova stated that the verdict was passed unanimously and it is considered that it is proven that Zsuzova ordered the commission of the crime and even obtained the weapons. While reading the sentence that details the shooting in which the couple was hit by dozens of bullets, the mother of the child Martina Kushnerova screamed relentlessly in the room, seated among the 11 victims’ representatives. The judge considers that it has been proven that Alina Zsuzova agreed with mediator Andreescu to kill Jan Kuciak in exchange for a financial reward. He also used the same method to order the killing of Maroš Selenka.

Fear of losing income

Sapova stated that Zsuzsova’s motive for ordering Kuciak’s assassination was her fear of losing Kočner’s income, which was her only financial support and that he was threatened by what the journalist was about to publish. He has also made several comments about the connections they both had through the Threema app. It is doubtful that Kočner and Zsuzsová They spoke openly about committing murders Confidence in confidentiality of communication. It indicated that Zsuzova initiated the alleged cipher and paid particular attention to the evidence that it was she who first ordered the killing of Šelinka and then that of Kočiak, while it was not established that she consulted these orders with Kočner.

The verdict was passed unanimously and it is considered proven that Zsuzova ordered the crime and even obtained the weapons

Regarding Andruskó (one of the witnesses) assertion that Kočner ordered the killing through Zsuzsová, the presiding judge explained that if Kočner had known about the journalist’s murder, she would have withdrawn the surveillance team that he had been dealing with day and night. She also noted that it was not established when and how Kočner’s money would have been obtained by Zsuzsová to pay the killers. Against Kočner, in his opinion, only indirect evidence was presented.

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This second version of the trial is, as was the first, a mirror of the time when corruption reigned in Slovakia, in the hands of small groups of businessmen who They manipulated legislators and the courts. The new ruling for Zsuzova indicates that this time is now a thing of the past, but according to several signs outside the court, as long as Conner remains acquitted, there will be no doubt that he still has enough influence, even from prison, to direct sentences.

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