New Charges in Gorilla Corruption Affair
Slovak police look set to launch another investigation into the Gorilla corruption allegations, this time most probably involving the privatisation of former monopoly power produce Slovenske Elektrarne, a.s. (SE) to Italian energy giant Enel, reports Pravda daily.
The exact allegations are not being revealed, but according to the daily, criminal charges should be initiated in the coming days concerning mishandling of assets. Although the daily claims the charges are based more on testimonies and additional documents that the investigation team acquired, the allegations spring from the text of Gorilla.
The Gorilla transcripts, made as third party reports in a covert op by secret police in 2005-2006, point to crony ties between financial group Penta and top officials in privatisations and other deals. The current allegations could concern the part of the transcripts that claims partner at Penta, Jaroslav Hascak, was agreeing and planning the privatisation of the power plant and its assets with then economy minister Jiri Malcharek.
The transcripts talk of all kinds of commissions and deals, including a massive SKK 1 billion pay-off for ensuring Enel’s success in the tender for SE, where the money was allegedly to be channeled through the company Paroplynový cyklus before being paid off to Malcharek and something to the SDKU party.
The Gorilla transcripts might not be admissible in the courts, but they are providing enough fodder for the police to start digging deeper into the unproven allegations contained in them. The publication of the Gorilla reports worked in favour of Robert Fico and his Smer-SD party in the run-up to the elections, and now could prove to be a useful tool for bringing down the opposition, depending on where exactly the police decide to dig.