The killer of Nitra regional councillor and SMK party member, Laszlo Basternak, could face a 25-year prison sentence or even life behind bars. Basternak was killed by a gunshot to his head on Friday 9 July in front of his house in Hurbanovo.
The police stated that after the crime the suspect Štefan K. had jumped into his car in an attempt to flee the scene of the crime, only to be shot at 12 times by Basternak’s step-son. One shot hit the accused in the elbow, forcing him to run from the car. He was later caught and arrested by police on Saturday.
Police Vice-president, Michal Kopcik, informed that the murder had been preceded by an incident on Thursday, when some unknown trespasser had tried to gain entry to Basternak’s property. It is still not certain, though, whether this had anything to do with Basternak’s murder the next day.
An attempt had already been made to kill Basternak in March, when an unidentified man tried to kill him while he was taking his dog out for a walk, but the bullet hit an iron gate, which surely saved Basternak’s life.
At that time, Basternak claimed that the incident was clearly linked to his political activities, as he had been receiving threatening letters for some time. He had refused police protection, however, when he was informed that it would limit his freedom of movement. Local residents in Hurbanovo expressed on TV, though, that the murder was more likely linked to his business activities than his political position.