Friday, February 29, 2008

Polish Police Use Jamming Kit to Block Protesters Phones

The polish newspaper, Dziennik has reported that the local police used jamming equipment to block the mobile phones belonging to nurses who had occupied the Prime Minister's Chancellory during last summer protesting for higher wages.

It's reported that the equipment used was so strong that it affected phones belonging to bystanders and residents within a mile of the building. Polkomtel, owner of the Plus GSM network, told the Electionic Communication Office (UKE) that several thousand of its customers had problems with making connections. After three hours, the company cancelled its complaint. Quite why the security services did not simply ask the operators to suspend the local base station has not been clarified.

Last June, around 1,000 nurses protested outside the Chancellory in makeshift camps in protest over wages, which average US$500 per month. National wages tend to average US$900 per month in the country. Four nurses broke into the building and occupied Prime Minister's Chancellery for two weeks.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

President of Olsztyn arrested on rape charges

Police have arrested Czeslaw Malkowski, president of Olsztyn, northern Poland, on charges of harassing female employees of the town hall and raping one of them.

Malkowski's office in the town hall is currently being searched and documents found there are being secured. The president will testify later today.

Yesterday Malkowski announced that he would be taking two days off, assuring at the same time that he is innocent and the evidence against him, recordings on which he makes indecent proposals to his employees, are not genuine.

The investigation concerning the sex scandal in Olsztyn's town hall is run by the District Prosecutor's Office in Bialystok, north-eastern Poland, and was handed over to it by the one in Olsztyn to avoid accusations of partiality.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Lobbyist Dochnal accuses Krakow TV chief of political favouritism

Director of the Krakow Branch of Polish Television Witold Gadowski denies accusations that he was former Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro’s secret emissary.

On Monday, lobbyist and businessman Marek Dochnal, who was arrested in 2004 on charges of bribing a former MP Andrzej Peczak (Democratic Left Alliance - SLD) and money-laundering, said on the TVN channel that Witold Gadowski had asked him to become a state witness and to co-operate with prosecution.

Witold Gadowski admitted in an interview with Radio Krakow that when he was a TVN reporter, he used to meet Dochnal’s wife. Director of Krakow TV said he was then investigating Marek Dochnal’s links with a Swiss banker Peter Vogel who had allegedly managed proceeds from illegal activities of prominent Polish left-wing politicians, mainly from SLD.

Gadowski did not deny Dochnal’s accusation that he had maintained close relations with former Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro, but explained that he had always drawn a line between his journalistic profession and private life and that his contacts with Dochnal’s wife were strictly professional.

Marek Dochnal also said on TVN that a journalist from the ‘Wprost” weekly magazine, Dorota Kania had borrowed a few hundred thousand zlotys from his family and in return, she offered assistance in obtaining the favours of leading Law and Justice politicians. Dochnal added that when PiS lost the parliamentary election in 2007, the journalist repaid the loan.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Drunken Polish man went on rampage with golf club

PENSIONERS had to run for cover in a Doncaster social club as a drunken man went on the rampage with a golf club after he was refused more booze.
Women hid in the toilets as 22-year-old Mateusz Rowinski went round smashing glasses, tables and chairs in the bar of the Balby Bridge WMC during a quiet Sunday lunchtime session, a court heard.

The incident was so frightening that one elderly member, in his 80s, feared he was going to have another heart attack.

Robert Rimmer, a member of the club for more than 60 years, said afterwards: "I had never seen anything like that in the club. I was having a quiet rum and peppermint when he started bringing the club down over the tables and smashing glasses. Everyone got out of his way and all the girls ran to the toilet to get away.

"I have had several heart attacks and I was scared that this might have caused another one."

The judge at Doncaster Crown Court, Recorder Peter Kelson, QC, said Rowinski had gone on the rampage.

"The good people of that area are entitled to a quiet drink without people like you, not able to hold your drink, doing something like this."

Rowinski, a warehouseman, who lived only a few doors from the club in Roberts Road, Balby, admitted affray and was jailed for nine months.

Prosecutor Carl Fitch said about 20 people, mainly elderly, were in the Balby Bridge one Sunday afternoon last August when Rowinski entered but was refused a drink because he was not a member and appeared drunk.

As he walked out he prodded one of the pensioners with his golf club, which shocked him, but Rowinski returned a few minutes later and "brought the golf club crashing down" on an empty chair at the same table.

Mr Fitch said: "Customers retired to the snooker room and the defendant went on to use the club to smash glasses on tables. All the witnesses were terrified and scared of what was happening."

Police were called and they arrested Rowinski and when he sobered up he said he couldn't remember anything because of the amount he had drunk that day.

Kevin Jones, defending, said his behaviour was inexcusable and it was uncharacteristic because he was not used to drinking to that level.

Mr Jones said Rowinski came to Doncaster looking for work and sent some of his wages back to his family in Poland and was willing to pay compensation to the club if he was given a suspended prison sentence.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Poles tries to burn himself to death

A man who set himself on fire outside the district court in Slupsk, northwestern Poland on Monday is fighting for his life.

After a long and strenuous fight for the man's life, the doctors say his condition is serious, but stable. Due to extensive burns, Jaroslaw M. is currently in a drug-induced coma.

A decision is to be taken later today whether should be transported to a medical facility specializing in treating burns in Gryfice, north-western Poland.

The event occurred yesterday around 2 PM outside the building of the district court in Slupsk. The man doused his body with a highly inflammable liquid, and then set himself on fire.

His reasons for doing so remain unknown.

He was not involved in any legal proceedings in the court that day. Krzysztof Ciemnoczolowski, head of the district court in Slupsk, confirmed that the man was involved in a child support case three years ago. Police are investigating the matter.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Letter from Brianna Lawson…

Got a letter from Brianne Lawson, who is the sister of the late Aaron Lawson, a US Marine who was killed under mysterious circumstances in Warsaw, Poland, last January. In her letter, she tells of evidence which would seem to point towards Aarons then girlfriend and her two brothers. Police however, have been either unwilling or unable to move on the case. I am printing the letter here along with some backtracking links.

Hey Adam,

I am sorry that it has taken me a while to get back to you. I have been trying to pull some things together to give you a better story.

Do you know of any contacts in Poland's or Warsaw's Newspaper's? I am trying to get an article printed there, but perhaps it is worthless.

This is a news story about my brother from WJZ in Baltimore.

Note: The original internet article is available online on the Polish Police and Administrative Corruption page (See HERE).

Family Wants Answers In Marine's Suspicious Death

From: (two videos...)
Aaron Lawson, 28, died mysteriously in Poland eight months ago. Bruises marked the Marine reservist's head, neck, arms and legs.
An Anne Arundel family is on a crusade after their son, who served as a Marine, mysteriously died overseas.

Mary Bubala has reaction from family members who say he was murdered.

The family says medical reports show their son was beaten to death. But nearly a year later, foreign police refuse to search for a killer.

Loretta Lawson-Munsey has a heart full of steely determination--to get justice for her oldest son.

Aaron Lawson, 28, died mysteriously in Poland eight months ago. Bruises marked the Marine reservist's head, neck, arms and legs.

"He was a good guy, and he didn't deserve this," said Lawson-Munsey.

Nearly a year later, his family has virtually no answers about how Aaron died or why.

Polish police have ruled his death an accident, though the medical examiner's report shows Aaron likely died from blunt trauma.

"The police still won't rule it as a homicide," said Matthew Lawson, Aaron Lawson's father.

"I did a horrible thing. I took pictures of my dead son with the funeral director showing me his marks because I knew someone killed my son," said Lawson-Muncey.

The Lawsons have made repeated pleas to the U.S. Embassy in Poland, the Marine Corps, the FBI and Congress for help.

They believe Aaron was the victim of a Polish Mafia hit possibly because he befriended a young woman who had Mafia ties and tried to help her leave.

"To them Aaron was just some guy on the street that may or may not have gotten in the way of their business and to us he was so much more," said Sam White, Aaron's best friend.

The circumstances surrounding Aaron Lawson's death are a source of endless pain and bitter frustration for his parents who want nothing more than justice for their oldest child.

"We just want somebody to help us. We want somebody that may know help," said Lawson-Muncey.

Police in Poland do not answer to the victims' families so the Lawsons are unable to communicate. They're currently working with Maryland Congressman Wayne Gilchrest to hopefully get some answers about how their son died.

Police records show Aaron Lawson's bank account was drained within hours of his death.
So here is what we have thus far. Please let me know if any of this makes sense.

When Joanna (Aaron's girlfriend in Poland) was initially interviewed by Polish police she said she had no idea that Aaron was coming into town April 20th. She also said she spent the night at girlfriend's house the night her was murdered and had since destroyed the SIM card to her phone (after) she heard of Aaron's "death".

In her interview with our lawyer back in January, she claimed that she did know Aaron was in town, (however, it seems clear) that after he was murdered, she took his ATM card out of his wallet, cleared out his account, and then put the card back in his wallet which was in his pant's pocket.

When I arrived in Poland, I asked the police to pull the video tapes to the ATM that the money had been withdrawn from to verify who it made the withdrawal. Unfortunately, to open this aspect in discovery almost 8 months later would of course be of no value to us now because after a certain amount of time, the tapes are re-recorded over.

Apparently the girlfriend also has one male friend and two male brothers. One of the brothers is a "security guard" which in Poland is a position better known as a murderer. Apparently this brother met Aaron and liked him but according to my brother, he only met the other brother, the one that did not work due to being mentally unstable (some sort of depression) and was therefore unable to work. I never knew of this "security guard" brother.

Joanna, the girlfriend…
As the story goes, Joanna worked as a stripper at the OAZA because she was just doing what she had to do to support her family. While he was alive, Joanna claimed she was pregnant by my brother. At the interrogation however, she claimed she was not. Aaron however didn't believe her at that time and thought she only wanted money. When I got to Poland, I took his SIM card out of his phone and gave it to Police to retrieve all of their phone conversations. All the police told me was that Joanna and Aaron had been arguing. That is all they will tell us as far as what their exchange was about. The last translation I have of theirs is her saying "What? Do you think it is that easy?" Referring to Aaron getting her an apartment in Warsaw so she would be safe and wouldn't to have to dance anymore.

Aaron was to have been on a flight two days after his death to go to Paris to meet friends. He was then going to go to Holland to see his son. Because there was no second ticket, he obviously had no plans of taking her or sneaking her out of Poland. Probably, all he was doing was trying to help her get out of her job which she claimed she hated doing so much.

Two forensic scientists have claimed that the injuries sustained by Aaron had to happen by an "aggressor(s)". The injuries are not consistent with how the police said he died, and there was a baseball bat indentation in his skull.

Obviously, you understand my conclusions…

I have another article and news report I can send to you as well. I have a picture of Joanna that I am sending. I can send you her last name and address as well. I am not sure how much you are looking for, or willing to publish. I am just so furious that she/and her brother /friend are still out there and nothing has been done. (Between you and I, and you will read in the newspaper article, we have DNA that is not Aaron's but right now, the police are saying they won't test the brother or the friend against this DNA.)

Let me know if you want more, have questions etc.

Thanks so much Adam,
Take care
Brianne Lawson

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Daily Mail pays for dodgy stories: Part XXI

It seems the only qualification you need to be a Daily Mail investigative journalist is to have a thick cheque book.

You remember the post we did about how Sue Reid, top Mail investigative sleuth, had been offering money for Poles - and me (which proves how dumb they are) - to go over to the UK and park illegally and speed, just to 'show' how thousands of Eastern Europeans were doing the same and avoiding paying the fines because their vehicle was not registered in the UK?

Well, the Daily Mail never rests in its ethical quest for the truth.

Here is an email doing the rounds from another Mail hack, Diana Appleyard, who is offering money for information on Eastern European law breaking in the UK.

-----Original Message-----
From: []
Sent: 13 February 2008 15:57
Subject: Response Source - Diana Appleyard , Daily Mail (Request for personal case study)
PUBLICATION: Daily Mail (Request for personal case study)
JOURNALIST: Diana Appleyard (staff)
DEADLINE: 14-February-2008 16:00
QUERY: I am urgently looking for anonymous horror stories of people who have employed Eastern European staff, only for them to steal from them, disappear, or have lied about their resident status. We can pay you £100 for taking part, and I promise it will be anonymous, just a quick phone call. Could you email me asap? Many thanks, Diana.

They must be desperate.

Hat tip to the nice person at Five Chinese Crackers for the email alerting me of this.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Polish woman guilty of killing partner

A WOMAN has been found guilty of manslaughter for stabbing her partner at a Dorset campsite.

Ewa Katarzyna Palkowska, 41, was charged with killing Dariuz Swiader at the Clay Pigeon Caravan Park, Wardon Hill, Evershot, in October, 2006.

She wept as a jury delivered its verdict of not guilty of murder but guilty for the lesser charge.

Speaking from Poland after she had been informed of the verdict Magda Pritchard, the cousin of 36-year-old Mr Swiader, said: "On behalf of myself and the family I'm a bit disappointed with the verdict. But the main thing I want to make known is our sincere gratitude to all of the police who have put so much work in.

"If they hadn't been involved the outcome would have been much different."

Mrs Pritchard paid special tribute to the officers who had liased with the family in the case, Inspector Kevin Lansdale and Detective Constables Simon Tallick, Paul O'Rourke and Steve Richards.

She added: "Simon and Kevin came to Poland and gave their condolences to my auntie (Dariusz's mother) personally.

"Without them it would have been much harder to take it."

Palkowska will return to court on March 3 to be sentenced. She will also hear whether she is going to be deported.

The jury spent nearly three days deliberating their verdict.

They had heard how there had been an argument when Palkowska was angry with Mr Swiader for failing to pay a cheque into the bank earlier in the day.

They were told that Palkowska was drunk on the night in question. Before they came to a decision Judge Guy Boney stressed how this should affect the jury's verdict.

He said: "A drunken intent is still an intent but there is a limit as to how far that position can be taken.

"If you come to the conclusion that she had taken such a large quantity of drink that at the moment of the stabbing she was, or may have been, no longer capable of forming the intention - either to kill him or do him really serious harm - then she would not be guilty of murder.

"Instead she would be guilty of manslaughter."

DI Lansdale, who was the police officer in the case, said: "We accept the verdict of the court.

"This has been a long and painstaking inquiry for us.

"It has been very difficult as a number of the people who were involved are of Polish extraction and had gone back to Poland.

"We had to go to Poland to keep in touch with the witnesses and to get them to court."

He added: "We would like to reassure people that Dorset is still a safe area and this is not something that is a common occurrence.

"We would like to thank the people that have come forward and helped with the investigation, particularly local people.

"The family have been very impressed with the work that the police have done on the case and they wanted to get that across."

DI Lansdale said that the police had worked closely with the Polish community to offer reassurance and support to those affected by the incident.

He added: "The inquiry itself was painstaking - involving officers from across Dorset. There were 139 statements taken, 500 exhibits, 158 actions and 130 different people coming to the attention of the investigative team during the course of the enquiry."

Mr Swiader came from a small town close to Szczecin in Poland and had lived in Weymouth for about a year and latterly at the Clay Pigeon site near Dorchester.

DI Lansdale said: "The time between the incident and the trial date which commenced on January 14, 2008, at Winchester Crown Court created logistical problems with numbers of Polish witnesses moving within the UK and also returning to Poland in locating them and ensuring attendance at the trial."

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Ziobro destroyed documents?

The inspection of the political office of former Minister of Justice Zbigniew Ziobro (Law and Justice) has allegedly proved that documents were being destroyed there on a massive scale.

Journalists from the RMF FM radio managed to obtain the report from the internal inspection of the Ministry of Justice.

It appears, say sources, that only in 2007, more than a half of the one thousand documents that were in Ziobro's office disappeared.. The inspectors also noticed that over a thousand documents were not recorded at all.

In total, documents on over 30 cases have gone missing.

The RMF FM journalists claim that the biggest number of irregularities were found at the office of Jerzy Engelking, the deputy to the Public Prosecutor.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Polish football fans most anti-Semitic in Europe?

Or so says a report by British MP John Mann alongside English activist Jonny Cohen (who I think is from the 'Socialist Zionist Culturally Jewish youth movement' Habonim Dror UK) presented at the Global Forum against Anti-Semitism, in Jerusalem.

In the report - entitled Anti-Semitism in football - a scar on the beautiful game - Man has counted over 30 incidents of anti-Semitic abuse at football matches across Europe. The Jerusalem Post reports:

The UK and Poland are the worst offenders, according to the 16-page document, which describes anti-Semitic incidents in 18 countries across Europe. The report notes that "in Polish matches fans routinely call each other 'Jews' as a term of abuse.

One example detailed occurred in May 2006 during a Polish cup tie between Stal and Resovia Rzeszow, where "fans of Stal exhibited a huge flag with the motto: "H5N1 - not only one Jew will die" and a banner with a Celtic cross - a racist symbol of white power."

Another occurred in Krakow in March 2007, when fans of Legia Warsaw chanted "Jews, Jews, Jews, [the] whole of Poland is ashamed of you."
There is no doubt that there a quite a few right wing thugs in Polish football. And they can be very unpleasant. One of the worst clubs with a history of this is Lodz LKS, which is, or was, according to a report by the AJC Berlin Office/Ramer Centre for German-Jewish Relations ‘heavily infiltrated’ by the fascist nut job National Revival party (NOP).

And it’s not just the fans painting their dumb swastikas on walls and chanting anti-Semitic chants on the terraces. It’s actually in the dressing rooms of the clubs themselves, alleges Frankline Mudoh, who claims that coaches from many teams in Poland are ‘put under pressure from players not to include blacks in their team’!

The Jerusalem Post goes on:

In the UK, the report says, fans of Arsenal chanted "Send the Jews to Auschwitz."

The report also details anti-Semitic verbal abuse directed towards Israelis, including chants shouted at national team goalkeeper Dudu Awat of Spanish club Deportivo La Caruna during games against Osasuna, and the assault on Hapoel Tel Aviv fans after the team's win over Ukrainian team Chernomorets.
The Arsenal obsession comes from the hatred of their north London rivals, Tottenham Hotspur, with its home ground in an area which once had a relative concentration of Jews living there. One of the chants you can still hear at Arsenal – whether Spurs are playing or not – is I've got a foreskin, how 'bout you?'

How quaint!

Arsenal fans have always protested that when calling fans and players of Spurs ‘yids’, they were not being derogatory to those players and fans – the vast majority of which are obviously not Jewish. And some of the supporters of Spurs call themselves the ‘Yid Army’...strange but true.

So, how large is this problem and is it on the rise? Mann, the MP who wrote the report, certainly thinks so: “The oldest hatred - anti-Semitism - continues to rear its ugly head in football," he writes in his report.

The football authorities in Poland were slow to get going on anti-racism measures, after black players began to come and play here. Michal Listkiewicz, chairman of the Polish Football Authority ignored the problem, and was slow to act, as he was against fighting endemic corruption in the game. But anti-Semitism on the terraces (and in the dressing room) is not dependant on what happens at football clubs. Anti-Semitism is used by fringe and populist political groups, which had a field day in the two years of the Kaczynski government – so encouraged they were by the weird administration in power.

But maybe the populist moment – which peaked in the wake of EU accession – has waned here. There are still the meat-heads of course, and they won’t be going way anytime soon. But as a political force these groups are spent. For now.

Is Poland a quivering pogrom time bomb waiting to go off? Is anti-Semitic Polish or English football culture getting worse? Not really.

And the admittedly offensive chanting of Arsenal fans in London? I honestly don’t think that has much to do with anti-Semitism at all. Not much.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

In the spotlight: Czeslaw Jerzy Malkowski

The Mayor of Olsztyn has caught national attention amid media accusations of his involvement in a sex scandal in Olsztyn's City Hall.

According to daily Rzeczpospolita, Malkowski may have been sexually harrassing female members of staff for years and there is a claim that he sexually assaulted a pregnant woman. The mayor denied all allegations and threatened to sue the journalist who broke the story.

Media reports have suggested that local politicians knew about the alleged offenses for some time, but an investigation into the accusations only began after the recent media attention. The case was looked at first by the Prosecutor's Office in Olsztyn and then tranferred to Bialystok for the sake of greater objectivity. The prosecutors possess circumstantial evidence, including pictures and recorded phone calls, but it's not certain whether this evidence is admissible in court. The media has suggested that this evidence points to Malkowski's guilt. The mayor, for his part, has responded by casting doubt on the Prosecutor's evidence, saying it's simply not his voice in the recordings, for example.

The scandal has been aggravated by the fact that the Prosecutor's Office in Bialystok sent a list featuring the names of the mayor's accusers to Olsztyn's City Hall in a request for the women's files. Addressed to the office rather than a particular person, the list found its way onto Malkowski's desk. Although legally justifiable, the prosecutor's handling of the delicate matter has been described by many as inept.

In the meantime, Civil Platform (PO) MPs from the Warmia and Mazury regions have revealed they are considering staging a referendum in Olsztyn that would result in the Mayor's removal from office. The referendum would be valid if at least 30 percent of those eligible to vote were to participate.

Born in 1950, Malkowski belonged to the Polish Unified Workers' Party (PZPR) and headed a censorship office in Olsztyn during Poland's communist times. He became mayor of the city in 2001 and was reelected in 2006.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Polish Killers of 94-year-old 'took body on Tube'

A 94-year-old widow who survived the Holocaust after fleeing Nazi Germany was battered to death by her "greedy" Polish cleaner, a court has heard.

Thea Zaudy was "brutally" beaten and strangled in her home
Widow Thea Zaudy was "brutally" beaten and strangled by Jolanta Kalinowska in her own home, Oxford Crown Court was told.

The cleaner, her son Adrian Ryszard Lis and his girlfriend Monilca Sienkiewicz then stuffed the old woman's body into a suitcase, it was alleged.

They took it from the woman's Notting Hill home on to a tube train, before being met by a friend who drove them out to a field in Oxfordshire. There, they burnt it in a bid to conceal the evidence, it was alleged.

The trio then went on to empty the elderly woman's bank account of Ј10,000 in a week-long shopping spree last July, the court heard.

Mrs Zaudy, who came to Britain as a German refugee in 1939, ran a carpet shop for many years before her husband's death and then worked in a department store.

At the time of her death she was living in Notting Hill Gate, west London, and was "comfortably well-off".

But prosecutor Nicholas Dean said she suffered a "brutal death ... at the hands of someone she trusted."

He said: "It involved brazenly going to her home and inflicting horrible injuries and concealing what happened.

"The defendant took advantage of the situation in effect to steal from a dead woman."

Kalinowska, from Ealing, west London, had worked as a cleaner and home help for some months and had keys to her flat.

Mr Dean went on: "The prosecution says she is a greedy and dishonest individual. Her greed and dishonesty is to blame for the killing of Thea Zaudy."

A post mortem examination found Mrs Zaudy died of asphyxia. She also suffered injuries to her face, scalp and thigh and fractured ribs. Mr Dean said the 4ft 11in "little old woman" would have put up a fight.

CCTV cameras captured Kalinowska at Notting Hill tube station on July 11 last year, the day Mrs Zaudy disappeared, the court heard.

The next day Kalinowska and Sienkiewicz, 19, also from Ealing, then bought cleaning products to clean up the body and the mess in her flat.

Sienkiewicz also sent her boyfriend Lis, 23, a text saying: "Now Zaudy God, yuck yuck then shopping."

The charred remains of Mrs Zaudy's body were later found by a farm worker. Police had no idea about its identity until Mrs Zaudy's friends in her bridge-playing circle reported her missing.

Kalinowska has denied killing Mrs Zaudy. The cleaner claimed the woman had built up Ј10,000 in gambling debts playing bridge and had demanded to borrow money off her. She claimed she lent Mrs Zaudy Ј10,000, who then allowed her to use her account as a way of paying her back.

Lis, 23, and Sienkiewicz, 19, and Lukasz Gajda, 25, from Ealing, - who is said to have met them at Ealing Broadway and driven them and the body to Oxfordshire in his BMW - all deny assisting an offender by knowingly removing evidence. They claimed they thought the suitcase contained wet blankets.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Verdict in Kulczykpark trial today

Five defendants in the so-called “Kulczykpark” scandal may hear the final court verdict in Poznan on Monday.

The mayor of Poznan Ryszard Grobelny is among the five accused. According to the prosecution, they overstepped their competences causing millions of zlotys’ loss to the city budget.

The five are accused of selling an attractive plot of land located in the centre of Poznan well under the market price to Ms. Grazyna Kulczyk, the wife of one of the richest Poles, businessman Jan Kulczyk.

Radio Merkury has reported that the final speeches by the prosecution, defence and the accused will be heard before the court before the final verdict is read out. The defendants, who have pleaded guilty so far, including the mayor of Poznan, may be sentenced for up to ten years in prison.

In 2002, Ms. Kulczyk bought the said plot in central Poznan with a surface area of 1.5 hectares for 9.7 million zlotys, i.e. 671 zlotys per square metre.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Anti Polish website created in Iceland

A 14-year old boy from Iceland has created an Association Against Poles on the internet.

He calls his fellow countrymen to get rid of Poles while there is still time.

Three days after creating the site, the boy had received the support of 700 other teenagers. The messages in their posts is clear: kick Poles out of Iceland.

The case has received massive media coverage in Reykjavik and is now sparkling heated debates all over Iceland. Some posts on the web site’s forum are so offensive that the police intend to start an investigation.

"A xenophobic mood is on the rise in Iceland. The number of immigrants is skyrocketing, which makes native inhabitants uneasy and confused", says Einar Skulason, head of the Intercultural Centre in Reykjavik, quoted in Rzeczpospolita.

"They vent their frustration on Poles, as they are the most numerous immigrant group. Furthermore, a negative image of Poles is boosted by the media, which highlight crimes committed by Poles,” says Skulason.

Currently, the population of Iceland is just over 300,000.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Former Polish MP posts anti-Semitic video on YouTube

Leszek Bubel, former MP and presidential candidate has posted an anti-Semitic video on YouTube.

"Longinus Zerwimycka", the new video by Leszek Bubel, which critics say is abundant in anti-Semitic content, has caused widespread outrage among the Jewish community in Poland. The video can be seen on YouTube, as well as on Leszek Bubel's Polish National Party (PPN) website.

"This is anti-Semitism in its most pathetic form. We will not take legal action, as we do not want to make fools of ourselves", said Piotr Kadlcik, head of the Association of Jewish Communes in Poland, quoted by "Rzeczpospolita".

Bubel has already been accused of anti-Semitic remarks. Two years ago he was fined 5,000 zlotys for slandering the Jewish nation by a Warsaw court.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Palikot presidential smear case dropped

The prosecutor's office in Lublin has declined to investigate the case of alleged slandering of President Lech Kaczynski by MP Janusz Palikot from the ruling Civic Platform (PO) party.

The spokesperson for the circuit prosecutor's office in Lublin, Beata Syk-Janowska, has announced that the office had declined to investigate into the case as "there is a lack of public interest in prosecuting this deed by private indictment ".

Palikot had addressed the question of Lech Kaczynski's alleged ‘alcohol problem’, wondering whether his frequent visits to the hospital were related to his ‘detox therapies’.

A couple of days after posting these statements on his blog, MP Palikot apologized to the President.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Former Justice Minister witness in MP suicide case

Zbigniew Ziobro, the former Polish Minister of Justice, is to testify today at the Public Prosecutor’s office in Lodz, central Poland, as a witness in the investigation into the suicide of Barbara Blida.

The Democratic Left Alliance MP shot herself in April last year, when the Internal Security Agency (ABW) was searching her premises in connection with a corruption case.

The Blida’s family attorney, Leszek Piotrowski, thinks that Ziobro might be one of the most important witness in the case.

The investigation is to establish whether the ABW officers broke rules of search and detention during the arrest of the former MP. How was it possible for Blida to have a gun on her which the officers were unaware of.

Blida shot herself in the toilet while a female ABW officer was supposed to guard her. The prosecutors are also investigating the legitimacy of detaining the MP.

So far, the prosecutors interrogated, among others, former PM Jaroslaw Kaczynski, former Minister of Interior and Administration Janusz Kaczmarek and the former chief of police Konrad Kornatowski.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

A POLISH woman accused of murdering her partner at a Dorset caravan park concocted a string of lies to cover up her crime, a court was told.

Stewart Jones, prosecuting, told Winchester Crown Court that police and an ambulance were called to the caravan park on October 22, 2006.

Mr Swiader had been found in the kitchen of the caravan where he and Palkowska were living. He had fatal stab wounds to the upper body.

Mr Jones said the couple's friends Boleslaw Jurek Morman and Maruisz Pawlak, who also lived on the site, last saw Mr Swiader at their caravan around 11pm on October 21 after he had been quarrelling with Palkowska.

He said: "They tried to persuade Dariusz not to go back to his caravan and Ewa, but to stop with them for the night and try to sort it out in the morning. Tragically, of course, he didn't."

Mr Jones said when the men called round at Mr Swiader and Palkowska's caravan the next morning she addressed them from the bedroom window. She refused to let them in and told them to go away as she and Mr Swiader were making up.

When Palkowska later visited Mr Morman and Mr Pawlak's caravan, they said she ate a bowl of soup and spoke about sending money back home before admitting 'I killed Dariusz'.

The men then went round to the caravan, where they discovered Mr Swiader 'in a pool of his own blood'. A pathologist's report later suggested he had been dead since the early hours of the morning.

When the police and ambulance crew arrived Mr Jones said Palkowska 'played dead', acting as if unconscious and claimed she had taken an overdose. When interviewed Palkowska said a gang of three or four men, to whom her partner was in debt, had come round to the caravan at some time that night.

She claimed the men had attacked Mr Swiader, also forcing her to handle the knife, and then doped her so she passed out.

Mr Jones dismissed this as a 'fiction' that Palkowska had created.

He said that, although no fingerprints could be clearly identified on the knife, Mr Swiader's blood was found on a pair of Palkowska's jogging bottoms and her blood-stained footprint was discovered on a carpet in the caravan. The trial continues.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Polish Sex-offender scandal

A violent Polish sex offender deemed too dangerous to stay in Canada has avoided deportation for eight years by refusing to sign travel documents, The Vancouver Sun has learned.

Between 1981 and 1998, 51-year-old Jerry Bielecki built a criminal record in B.C. for rape, uttering threats, unlawful confinement, fraud and drug offences.

During Bielecki's last sentence for the armed sexual assault of a teenager, the federal immigration minister issued a danger opinion in 2000, meaning he posed too serious a risk to remain in Canada and must be deported.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Polish mafia gas supply scandal

A contract for gas supply signed by Poland in 2003 has become a new pretext for further arguments between the Civic Platform (PO) and Law and Justice (PiS), Polish Radio reports.

The latest disagreement between the largest opposition party and government stems from a TV programme broadcast by the private TVN channel on Tuesday night, revealing that in 2003, when the Democratic Left Alliance (SLD) government was in power, Poland signed a contract for gas supply with a Hungarian company Eural-Trans-Gaz.

The company was managed by a henchmen of a Russian mafioso Semion Mogilevich who is believed to have controlled the largest Russian mafia syndicate in the world and who was arrested end of January.

As a result, PiS has requested PM Donald Tusk to provide information on the status of Poland’s energy security.

Former deputy minister of economy Paweł Poncyljusz (PiS) reminded that the contract with Eural-Trans-Gazem has been previously mentioned in the press in the context of the company’s alleged links with the Russian mafia.

In the opinion of PiS MPs, public opinion should be informed if the Internal Security Agency (ABW) informed the government about the press allegations.

Paweł Poncyljusz has also reminded that the US ambassador to Kiev, Ukraine sent an official letter on the subject of Mogilevich and Eural-Trans-Gaz to Warsaw in the past.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Polish Couple accept plea deal for taking $260,000 from woman, 93, the left in Poland

A Palm Beach couple accused of defrauding their 94-year-old neighbor and abandoning her in a nursing home in Poland will pay her $260,000 in restitution, WPBF News 25 reported.

In return, three felony charges against Aron Bell, 80, and Henryka Bell, 59, will be dropped. That is if they violate no laws within the next 18 months and have no contact with their neighbor, Janina "Nina" Zaniewska. The felony charges included grand theft from a person age 65 older.

Authorities said the Bells befriended 94-year-old Zaniewska and "systematically took over every aspect of her life," including redirecting phone calls and mail meant for her to themselves, according to a police report.

Police said the three lived in a condominium at 44 Coconut Row in Palm Beach, where they originally met and where the Bells began taking control of Zaniewska's finances.

According to the report, a bank manager told police that Henryka Bell brought Zaniewska to her office in April 2007 in order to open up an account in which the Bells would have access to. The bank manager told police that Zaniewska had been in her office two weeks before to open an account and had seemed fine, but when the 94-year-old came with Bell, she was confined to a wheelchair and seemed confused.

Investigators told WPBF that Henryka Bell demanded to have Zaniewska's Social Security payments redirected into the shared account. The bank manager said that she had refused to make the change, but that she later discovered that the couple had somehow been able to make the transaction anyway, according to the report.

Authorities said that Zaniewska had previously approached bank tellers in the bank and asked them not to give her money to the Bells, but while the couple was with the 94-year-old, they would not let her speak and kept her in a wheelchair.

According to the report, the Bells took Zaniewska to Poland on May 17, 2007, and returned without the 94-year-old on June 2. Police said that, with the help of the Polish-American Society Club in Lake Worth, officials located Zaniewska at a nursing home in a remote town in Poland. According to police, a detective called the nursing home and talked to Zaniewska, who told the officer, "Thank God, you found me."

Police said Zaniewska told the investigator that she had been tricked by the Bells and was placed in an "old lady home" against her will. Zaniewska told police that she believed the Bells were stealing her money and that she had thought that she was going on vacation to Poland and did not know she was going to be placed in a nursing home, Captain Elmer Gudger with the Palm Beach Police said.

"In the phone call that we made to her, when she realized it was the police department, she thanked us very much for finding her and made a comment that she thought she was going to die over there in the nursing home," Gudger told WPBF.

Gudger said that the Bells had withdrawn about $260,000 out of Zaniewska's bank accounts and were using the money to pay their own bills.

Authorities said they were able to bring Zaniewska back to Palm Beach after she had been in Poland for about four months.

The Bells' defense attorney said his clients are innocent and that they were holding Zaniewska's money while acting as her caretakers.

Aron Bell grew up in Poland during World War II and survived the Holocaust by living in the woods after his parents were taken by the Nazis at the age of 11. The story of how Bell and his brothers helped save thousands of fellow Jews is the subject of the 1994 book, "Defiance: The Bielski Partisans," by Nechama Tec. A movie based on the book is currently in production, slated to star current James Bond actor Daniel Craig, WPBF reported.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Last Polish Gov´t Accused of Security Breaches

Poland's last government was accused on Thursday of widespread illegal wire tapping, and of endangering NATO security by mishandling secret intelligence.

Janusz Ziemke, head of parliament's special services committee, told media that an internal audit by the National Security Agency showed that it had carried out at least 94 illegal wire taps during Jaroslaw Kaczynski's tenure as prime minister.

"Just one incident of illegal wire tapping in a democratic country should sound a warning bell," Parliamentary Speaker Bronislaw Komorowski said in a radio interview.

"If even one of these is proven, that people were listened to illegally, it would underline the belief that that government cared little about democratic mechanisms and the rule of law."

Allegations of abuse of state power are sensitive in Poland, which was run as a police state for five decades by communists.

Since losing power in October, officials in the Kaczynski government have faced numerous allegations that have supported the view that they sacrificed civil liberties in their zeal to stamp out graft and unmask communist-era agents.

Kaczynski and his former ministers have rejected the accusations, accusing the centre-right government of Donald Tusk of trying to derail the anti-corruption campaign they began.

The Gazeta Wyborcza daily reported on Thursday that Polish military intelligence was investigating whether three former officials illegally copied and walked out with secret documents that contained operational details and names of agents.

The newspaper said Poland, the biggest former communist member of NATO, might need to inform the military alliance that security had been were compromised.

"The situation in military counter-intelligence is very serious," said Ziemke. "Control was lost over several very important documents."

Antoni Macierewicz, the far-right former head of military counter-intelligence under whose watch the alleged breach took place, disputed the allegations.

"During the time I was in charge there were no illegal actions related to the documents," he said.

Former justice minister Zbigniew Ziobro also faces allegations that he mishandled secret investigation documents by transferring them to his unsecured laptop.

Ziobro has since admitted to having damaged the laptop in question, along with several cellphone cards.

Media have reported that two of his former deputies also destroyed their laptops, with one saying that he had accidentally dropped it into a bath full of water.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Situation in Polish secret services ‘disastrous’, according to former military counterintelligence chief

Antoni Macierewicz, Law and Justice party member of Polish parliament, and a former head of country’s military counterintelligence services, told Polish Radio 3 that the changes implemented by the new government are an act of ‘mad revenge’ on his party.

According to Macierewicz, the style of appointing new heads of Poland’s secret services by the ruling Civic Platform (PO) and the quality of the new appointees ‘smacks of vengeance’, in particular in the military counterintelligence, which is being "brutally liquidated, destroyed and its staff persecuted". Macierewicz also told the radio that the current head of the Intelligence Agency, Andrzej Ananicz, was guilty of attempts to strengthen Russian presence in Poland in 1992.

The former head of Poland’s military counterintelligence accused Ananicz of having Poland ratify a treaty that guaranteed Russia its presence in former Russian companies located in Poland.

Antoni Macierewicz added that under the Polish constitution, Prime Minister Donald Tusk was directly responsible for all of the changes made in the secret services and said that the changes should "be placed under particular scrutiny", Polish Radio 3 notes.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Polish internal security agency tapped phones illegally, claims MP

According to Janusz Zemke, the opposition Left and Democrats (LiD) MP, the investigation into the activities of the Internal Security Agency (ABW) is still in progress and has already uncovered almost one hundred cases of illegal phone taps.

The head of the parliamentary Special Services Committee told a private radio station he thinks that the heads of ABW will be soon taken to court.

“During the government of Law and Justice (2005-2007), the Internal Security Agency was bugging phones without the consent of the court. The investigation has revealed 94 such cases so far,” Zemke told RMF FM radio.

According to the MP, the previous heads of ABW repeatedly broke the law. Although the agents received consent from the courts for surveillance for month or three months period, if they failed to find any evidence against a person, they continued the surveillance unauthorized.

The MP stressed that there are probably more such cases, as the inspection is still in progress.

The Internal Security Agency is a government institution established in 2002 to protect the internal security of the Republic of Poland and its citizens. It also has the right to investigate corruption among persons on public posts, if it may be a threat to the security of the state.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Polish beggars target householders<

POLICE in Burnley and Padiham are advising residents to be on their guard after a series of incidents where Polish citizens have been knocking on doors, begging for money.

So far three men of different descriptions have called at separate homees displaying cards asking for cash.

In the first incident, last Friday afternoon, a smartly-dressed Polish man, thought to be aged around 20, was reported to be knocking on doors and begging in Burnley Road, Padiham. He showed a card to residents which said he was a student and needed money to complete his studies.

The man, who is white, was wearing a dark-coloured knitted hat, zip-up jacket and dark trousers.

In the second incident, a man was seen putting a card through doors in Basnett Street, Burnley. The card said he had three children and needed money to buy food and clothes for them. This man is white, around 5ft. 4in. tall and of stocky build. He was wearing a blue tracksuit and a blue baseball cap.

A third man with the same card was also seen targeting houses in Briercliffe Road, Burnley. The beggar is thought to be aged around 50 and was wearing a blue baseball cap and blue tracksuit top. He was also carrying a Lidl carrier bag.

Police are keen to stress none of the men have been agressive, although residents are asked not to give them money.

Insp. Viki Crorken of Burnley police said: "I would ask people not to give them any money. There are a lot of support services available to help people with things like clothing.

"We would advise people either not to answer their doors or to answer but say 'no thank you' and then close the door. The men all have different descriptions but the way they ask for money is the same."

Anyone with information is urged to contact Burnley police on 425001 or Crimestoppers, in confidence, on 0800 555 111.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Poland, Junction for Illegal Immigrants

About 15,000 illegal immigrants, most of them women, cross from Asia and the former Soviet Union each year into Polish territory to reach western Europe, Warsaw media headlined on Tuesday.

Organized by mafia people-smugglers, the immigrants are convoyed across the country to become prostitutes in Great Britain, France, Germany, Italy or Spain.

Polska daily news comments that Polish police barely touch these cases, since the current government does not force them to do so.

Poland, with its large border with Ukraine, became the European Union's biggest eastern door after entering the Schengen space in January, a borderless area of many former Soviet Union states.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

No Joke

Poland is the most polluted country in the world, according to a study by the Polish Academy of Social Sciences. Satellite photos of Europe show the largest clouds of particulates over Poland, probably because many large plants have shut down their pollution control equipment to save power. Fully 90% of the water in the country's rivers is undrinkable, and most of the water in the Vistula River, Poland's largest, is unfit even for industrial use. Fewer than half of the country's 800 cities have sewage treatment plants; even Warsaw, the capital, has no such facility.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Cops bust Polish neo-Nazi for Jewish grave vandalism

A neo-Nazi from Norridge confessed Friday to desecrating a Jewish cemetery with anti-Semitic graffiti, police said.

Mariusz Wdziekonski, 21, is being held awaiting hate crime and criminal damage to property charges for allegedly painting blue-and-silver swastikas and slurs — including “Aryan Power” and “white power” — on 57 headstones at Westlawn Cemetery in unincorporated Norridge Park Township last month, Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart said.

Wdziekonski, a machine mechanic, told investigators that he’s a “dues-paying member” of the “National Socialist Movement 88,” and that he vandalized the cemetery to stand out as a hero among his hate group peers. The “88” is a symbol for “Heil Hitler,” police said.

Wdziekonski, a Polish immigrant who has been in the United States for four years, was involved in the neo-Nazi movement in Poland, police said.

Cook County sheriff's police investigators caught a break in the case when Des Plaines police got a tip that Wdziekonski, of the 7800 block of Lawrence in Norridge, was responsible for the cemetery crime.

Police initially thought several vandals were involved, but Dart said Wdziekonski acted alone. If convicted, Wdziekonski, who lives a few blocks from the cemetery, could face up to 10 years in prison.

Cemetery general manager Vickie Pulido said she was glad police made an arrest so quickly.

“Hopefully, now justice will prevail and our families can begin the process of healing,” she said. “This has weighed very heavy on our families’ minds.”

The cemetery’s granite contractor told Pulido he expects to be able to remove the graffiti from the headstones for about $13,000, she said.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Poland’s winter of discontent -Beatroot

Civic Platform are clueless.” That’s what many are saying of Poland’s still fledgling government. It must be the shortest political honeymoon in history.

Usually, governments get elected, the majority are relieved to see the back of the old government, and a period of optimism and popularity ensues for the new leaders.

In the UK, Tony Blair and New Labour had, post-1997, a honeymoon that seemed to go on for years. In fact, it went on until after the next election, which they won, too. And then the honeymoon just kept on going. Until, that is, Tony went and spoiled it all by doing something stupid: he invaded Iraq, alongside his buddy, George.

Oops! Honeymoon ends in tears.

After Civic Platform won the October 21 election, the honeymoon seemed to be going to plan. Opinion polls put their approval rating over 50 percent; people were genuinely relieved not to have to wake up in the morning and read the headlines full of Roman Giertych, Andrzej Lepper or Jarolsaw Kaczynski making a fool of themselves, or Poland, or both.

But the approval ratings for Civic Platform are already on the decline. Some members of Platform’s coalition partners – the ever opportunistic Polish Peasant’s Party (PSL) - are muttering, off the record, their discontent.

When Tusk wakes up in the morning he will not be hearing the birds in the trees singing their welcoming morning chorus; all he will be hearing are people on the march demanding more of…well, pretty much everything, actually.

Organized, and not so organized, labour, are having a go and trying to get as much out of the government before they have time to settle. Miners, hospital workers, teachers, customs officials…the list is endless.

Not all of this is Civic Platform’s fault. They have a budget, and deficit, that was drawn up by the previous government.

They have chaos on the eastern border, with HGVs queuing for miles and miles, and days and days, on the Ukrainian and Belarusian side after Poland joined the Schengen fortress. Jaroslaw Kaczynski was claiming that Poland was ‘ready’ to enter Schengen as early as last summer. Well, plainly Poland was not ready. The new restrictions on Ukrainians, Belarusians, Russians entering the country - through already tough and inefficient borders - has created the increased delays and customs officials can’t cope with the extra bureaucracy. Naturally, they want more money for the work, and they want more staff to help them.

Though not their fault, the government, characteristically, seems ill prepared for what would happen after the election.

They created an expectation that here would be a government that would be competent – not like that Kaczynski farce – they would be decisive, resolute, purposeful, determined, strong, unifying.

Well, I just don’t see any of those qualities. None at all. All I see is dither, dither, dither. How long before the Polish Peasant’s Party start to distance themselves from the mess piling up before Tusk’s incredulous eyes?

Honeymoon? It wasn't even a day trip.