The Supreme Court senate ruled yesterday that the much-criticised release of alleged murderer and gangland boss, Karol Mello, was in line with the law.
Mello was released from detention for a second time in May this year after eventually being caught in Poland after over 4 years on the run, but the circumstances surrounding his release have raised many questions about the integrity of the judiciary. Mello was released without the knowledge of the police, for instance, and so they could not track him.
Mello’s release was announced late by former Attorney General Dobroslav Trnka at a press conference, which is how the police got to know about it. In the meantime, Mello had vanished into thin air.
Justice minister Lucia Zitnanska initiated an appeal to the Supreme Court in June, hoping to get the case referred back to the District Court in Bratislava, which would mean a new ruling on whether to keep Mello in jail or not. The Supreme Court senate rejected her appeal yesterday, though.
What is interesting is that Mello’s attorney, Ján Gereg, found out about the verdict from his other client, convicted gangland boss Mikulas Cernak, while he was visiting him in Ilava prison. Gereg told news portal Pluska.sk that Cernak had disclosed the verdict to him at midday already, just several minutes after the verdict was announced.
Karol Mello is accused of a double murder and an international arrest warrant has been issued for another murder he is accused of. His exact location is unknown, though, and so maybe the Slovak police have begun another four-year chase. Everything surrounding the case is dubious, pointing to possible ties between the criminal world and the judiciary.
For more on the Mello case, click here