Monday, August 31, 2009

Smuggler caught with 80 cocaine capsules in stomach

A man has been arrested in Warsaw with 80 capsules filled with cocaine in his stomach.

The suspicious behaviour of 55 year old Wieslaw S., attracted attention of Warsaw’s airport customs service. After questioning the man – Wieslaw S. – it was discovered that he had several dozen capsules with cocaine in his pockets and some in his stomach amounting to more than a half of kilogram of the drug in total.

Wieslaw S. swallowed 80 capsules two days before he took off from Buenos Aires airport on return to Poland. Right after his detention he was taken to hospital. According to the doctors his condition is “well”.

The 650 grams of cocaine Wieslaw S tried to smuggle to Poland is worth about 200,000 zloty. He faces up to fifteen years imprisonment.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

25-year-old ran amok with a knife in a Staszow church

A 25-year-old ran amok with a knife in a Staszow church in the middle of Mass last Sunday, injuring three female members of the congregation. Elzbieta Lasota, an eye-witness, told TVN24 reporters, “I looked round and there was a man of about 30, slim, tall, blond, holding a knife against someone’s neck. People tried to escape in panic.”

The man’s last act was to stab himself in the throat, missing his carotid artery by millimetres, before being restrained by male members of the church.

It later emerged that the young man, who had no previous criminal record, had been on an amphetamine binge. Father Henryk Kozakiewicz said the young man told him, “I’ve felt I’m being followed for several days. I took the knife because I felt someone was going to attack me.”

The three victims were kept in hospital, but their wounds are superficial and none of their lives is in danger. The attacker has been operated on and will be interviewed by police as soon as his condition allows.

Saturday, August 29, 2009


Everything in the Lodz region this week appears to be illegal. We begin with the exclusive British International School, which, Gazeta Lodz reports, doesn’t possess the necessary certification, isn’t registered with the Ministry of Education or the Education Department of the City of Lodz.
In addition it doesn’t have a sports hall, a library, native speaker teachers and the carer in the crèche doesn’t even speak English and can’t communicate with the toddlers. As a demonstration of their cultural sensitivity, the school served Hindu children beef for their lunch and responded to complaints from parents with letters written in Polish.

Despite this, they charge a massive EUR 700 per month to the parents of important foreign managers and business people that Lodz is desperate to attract. Antonio Melone, a Managing Director at Indesit Polska took the drastic step of relocating to Warsaw and told Gazeta Lodz, “From the educational point of view my children lost two years there, and now they have to work extra hard to catch up.” Another parent told reporters, “I wouldn’t have even considered moving to Lodz if I’d known there was no school here for my children.”

Meanwhile, nearby the village of Piatek an illegal alcohol factory has been discovered in a barn by Customs Officers. The discovery began with a standard roadside patrol that stopped a van carrying a large quantity of ethyl alcohol whose driver didn’t want to admit either where he had collected the load, or where he was taking it to. However, he had been spotted driving away from a farm and when Customs Officers investigated they found a primitive production line manufacturing neat alcohol from solvents. Officers seized 3,500 litres of the liquid, enough to prepare 20,000 litres of vodka with a duty value of PLN 340,000. The driver of the van and the farm owner are refusing to speak and will both face a steep fine if convicted.

Back in Lodz, even the taxi drivers are operating illegally, waiting for customers on the city’s famous Piotrkowski pedestrian precinct during the middle of the day, even though they have been banned from there since January 1st this year. The change in regulations, limiting the hours in which they can trade on the precinct and allowing them a maximum of 10 minute waiting time, appears to have had no effect on the drivers who simply ignore the signs and queue up at the rank all day despite only being allowed to from 6pm to 6am. Approached by reporters from Gazeta Lodz, the taxi companies deny all responsibility, claiming it is the business of the drivers and the City Guard. The City Guard meanwhile say the drivers claim they didn’t realise they had waited too long and that they will leave in a moment, “We can’t wait there looking at our watches until they overstay,” said Lech Wojtas of the City Guard road department.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Poles think of themselves as WWII heroes

The Polish Hero, one who saved Jews and fought the occupier is the most prominent image that Poles have of themselves from World War II, according to a poll by Pentor.

A majority also think that that Poles suffered more than even Jews during Nazi occupation.

Eighty-five percent said that Poles were engaged in fighting occupying forces and 75 percent say that Poles refused to collaborate with the enemy. Eighty-one percent of respondents think that Poles helped Jews and 85 percent are of the opinion that Poles helped one another.

The majority say the history of World War II is something that Poles can be proud of, especially pointed to heroes such as General Wladyslaw Sikorski, General Wladyslaw Anders and Saint Maksymilian Kolbe and to those involved in the Warsaw Rising and the September Campaign immediately after the Nazis invaded in 1939.

In terms of events that were embarrassing for Poles, the poll shows that memory does not serve so well. Rather than believing that Polish people were responsible for the deaths of several hundred Jews at Jedwabne in 1941, respondents claim that German soldiers were responsible for the pogrom. Poles also consider themselves to have suffered the most of all nationalities in Europe during the war and even more so than Jews.

“That is not reality. Poles suffered more than many nationalities but Jews were completely set for total extermination,” stated Pawel Machcewicz, historian and director of the to-be-completed Museum of the Second World War. He added that “there are breaks in national consciousness which make it hard to remember painful truths.”

Only 31 percent of Poles consider Poland to have been victorious at the end of WWII and the same percentage consider Poland to have lost the war.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Defence ministry accused of fatal incompetence

A top soldier has accused the Ministry of Defence of being partly responsible for the death of Captain Ambrozinski in Afghanistan last week.

Chief of Poland’s land forces, General Waldemar Skrzypczak has accused Ministry of Defence officials of being responsible for delays and wrong decisions in respect of necessary equipment for Polish troops in Afghanistan, which may have cost the life of Captain Daniel Ambrozinski, killed by Taliban last week.

In a recent interview in a national daily, Skrzypczak said that if the army had unmanned aerial vehicles and adequately armed helicopters, Captain Ambrozinski may have not been ambushed by a Taliban sniper.. The contingent has been struggling to acquire this equipment for two years now, he said, but the requests of commanders have been falling on deaf ears – everything is inundated with red tape, he said.

Defence Minister Bogdan Klich responded that the General had not notified him personally of the allegations.

Speaking on Polish Radio this morning, head of the opposition Democratic Left Alliance, Grzegorz Napieralski, said that his sympathies lie with General Skrzypczak, who is an “excellent soldier”, and that something must be very wrong for his “emotions to get better of him”. He also said he knew of delayed tenders, money shortages and further cuts being planned for next year at the MOD, which could effect the efficiency of troops.

The funeral of Captain Ambrozinski takes place today. He was killed in eastern Afghanistan in an attack that also four others injured.

Meanwhile, Defence Minister Klich will today present the government with a list of purchases for Polish troops in Afghanistan.

Following his surprise visit to the Ghazi base in Afghanistan at the weekend, Prime Minister Donald Tusk concluded that more equipment was needed to help troops perform ever more difficult tasks. He also announced changes in procedures which will allow the government to buy equipment, such as helicopters, immediately. The list of necessities also includes unmanned surveillance aircraft, vehicles and personal equipment for troops.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Two forty-year-olds from Tarnawa Dolna are accused of chasing a St Bernard dog by car for miles until the animal collapsed from exhaustion – then they ran it over, killing it.

The dog escaped from the garden of its owner this Monday, together with a boxer, when the gate was accidentally left open.
The boxer returned later, but the St Bernard disappeared without trace, until this Wednesday, when the owner’s brother overheard two men boasting of how they had run over a dog, unaware of his connection to it. They told how after killing the animal they had paid a neighbour a bottle of vodka to drag the dog into the bushes using his tractor. The two men have not been arrested or interviewed yet, “We’ll do so in the next few days. First we have to gather all the evidence,” Jerzy Gorecki of Sanok police told a reporter from Gazeta Rzeszów. The two men may ultimately face a charge of killing a dog with extreme cruelty, for which they could spend up to two years in prison.

In a related story, in Przychod, near Mlawa, a pack of dogs attacked a mother with her three-year-old daughter and then set upon a policeman called to the rescue, and all under the eye of their owner reports TVN24. The owner was walking the group of seven dogs when they set upon the passing mother and the young girl who was bitten on the foot. The girl’s mother swept her up and ran for safety into a nearby home and called the police. When they arrived the dogs set upon one officer, knocking him over and biting him on the leg. Only a warning shot into the air frightened the dogs off. Both the girl and the police officer were not seriously hurt. The 43-year-old owner, who was sober, was arrested and the dogs taken to a shelter and placed under veterinary observation. The man faces up to 10 years in prison.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Jail for illegal software use?

Two architects from Gdansk, northern Poland, could spend up to 10 years in prison for using illegal software in their office.

Wednesday, Gdansk police seized eleven computers with 46 illegal graphic and architectural programs installed on them. According to police, the illegally-downloaded software is worth more than 360,000 zlotys (88,000 euro).

“We entered the architecture office after we were informed about that infringement,” Magdalena Michalewska from the Gdansk’s police told the Polish Press Agency.

Polish law envisages five years of imprisonment for using illegal software but, in this case, two 35-year-old architects can face their punishment doubled as the owner’s loss of money was very serious.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Justice Minister’s son refuses court

Krzysztof Czuma, son of Justice Minister Andrzej Czuma, will not go to court despite the fact that a SKOK office in Wolomin, a Warsaw suburb has been attempting to sue Czuma for not repaying credit.

SKOK, a savings and loan financial institution, has fined the younger Czuma for not making payments for credit on his computer firm – a sum of 2,000 zloty (486 euro) plus interest.

SKOK has been attempting to get the money for two years, yet the Justice Minister’s son has not responded to court orders. On 30 June, courts ordered police to bring Czuma to courts. A trial date is set for 21 September.

Justice Minister Czuma has disassociated himself from the legal proceedings.

“Being the son of a Justice Minister comes with responsibilities – and definitely mandates respect for the court,” comments the daily Rzeczpospolita on the matter.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Barred: The Polish anglers who don’t let any get away

Eastern Europeans have been banned from fishing at a lake – after the site owner claimed they were stealing his stock.

Farmer Billy Evans charges anglers £7 a day at his four-acre lake, which is stocked with thousands of pounds worth of carp, tench, roach and bream.

Anglers are permitted to keep two of the fish they catch per day from open waters – but
many private fisheries, such as Mr Evans’s, bar them from taking any.

Mr Evans, 71, of Field Farm Fisheries in Launton, Oxfordshire, said that there are normally 30,000 fish in his lake but that hundreds have been stolen by eastern European anglers.

A month ago he erected a large hand-made sign reading: ‘No Polish or Eastern Europe fishers allowed.’ Since then he claims that he has not caught anybody stealing his stock.

He said: ‘I’ve found groups of Poles bagging up the fish. I’ve been catching them red-handed and have seen them on CCTV leaving with bags of fish.

‘I’ve also caught them using barbed hooks, which tear the fish’s mouth when removed
and can kill them.

‘The eastern Europeans tend to fish in groups, not alone, and I caught one group which had four carrier bags full of half-dead fish. I told them it wasn’t allowed and one guy threatened me.

‘That was a month ago, and it was then I decided to ban them. Since then they haven’t been back and I’ve not seen anybody trying to steal from me.’

An Environment Agency spokesman said anyone stealing fish could be prosecuted.

But Thames Valley Police said no thefts from Mr Evans’s lake had been reported.

A spokesman for the Equality and Human Rights Commission said: ‘It is unlawful to be refused a service – or not to be given the same standard of service extended to others – on grounds of race.’

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Pole appears on TV to deny rape attack

A CONVICTED Polish rapist has appeared on TV in his home country to deny attacking a Westcountry woman – a crime for which he is serving a double life sentence.

Jakub Tomczak, 24, raped a woman and left her unconscious and seriously injured under a van in Redlands Close, Whipton, Exeter, in 2006.

He was given two life sentences in January 2008, to be served in his native country.

Tomczak, speaking from his prison cell in Poland, claimed he had nothing to do with the brutal assault which left his victim seriously injured. The TV broadcast has also been streamed across the Internet, with a video clip of Tomczak talking about the night of the rape and his conviction.

During the interview, Tomczak claims that:

He had never met the victim until he was charged with rape and brought to court

Police rushed the case through because they had a suspect

He would not wish rape on anyone.

At his trial in Exeter, Tomczak was told he must serve a minimum of nine years before he could be considered for parole.

A student at the time of the attack, he was living in Monks Road, Polsloe, Exeter.

In the TV footage, smiling as he talks to the woman interviewer, Tomczak said: "I didn't rape the woman – I didn't know her. I only saw her one time and that was in court on the last day of the proceedings."

Speaking about the night of the rape, Tomczak said he remembered the city being empty as he walked home.

"I was drinking with friends and I went back to the hotel that I was working at to pick up some cigarettes," he said.

"I then went straight to my home about 2am or 3am. The city was empty. You can see all of this on the CCTV recordings.

"I wasn't drunk – I drank about two to three beers."

Tomczak told how he later returned to Poland where he received a call from his sister telling him that Exeter police wanted a DNA test from him.

He said: "I went to a Polish solicitor straight away and then went to the Polish police to have a DNA test taken.

"I went to a solicitor as I was afraid the UK police would not give me a fair trial. My solicitor said they were taking the DNA to eliminate me, not to accuse me.

"The UK police found my sperm on the woman but no fingerprints or blood.

"I am still pleading not guilty. The UK police wanted to close the case quickly as they had a suspect."

Friday, August 21, 2009

Polish man living in Bradford on the run

Two men – one a fugitive from justice – have been jailed for a total of 16 years for a savage and humiliating attack on a defenceless man in his home.

Rafal Kamil Krajewski, 31, was sentenced to nine years’ imprisonment after being tried in his absence at Bradford Crown Court.

A European Arrest Warrant is out for Krajewski after he jumped court bail last Christmas.

West Yorkshire Police believe he may be in Poland after he was allowed home for the festive season.

Grzegorz Holubowicz, 29, who turned up for the trial, was jailed for seven years.

Both men denied unlawfully and maliciously wounding fellow countryman Artur Wojtowicz on February 17, 2007.

It took the jury just minutes today to find the pair guilty.

The judge, Recorder Jonathan Sandiford, branded Krajewski the ringleader in a vicious and unprovoked attack on Mr Wojtowicz, who was living at Newforth Grove, Bowling, Bradford.

The court heard that Mr Wojtoicz was struck with a bottle, stabbed with a kitchen knife and stabbed in a two-hour orgy of violence.

As a final act of humiliation, he was urinated on, the jury heard.

Krajewski, who was living on Manningham Lane, Bradford, was said to have wielded the bottle.

Mr Wojtoicz does not know why Krajewski and Holubowicz, of Parsonage Road, Tyersal, Bradford, set about him.

The pair pretended they had come round for a friendly drink, the court heard.

Mr Wojtoicz, in his mid-forties, suffered multiple injuries including stab wounds to his shoulder and hand and stamping injuries that left a shoe imprint on his back.

After the attack, he was dragged to his bathroom, made to wash his wounds and ordered not to report the matter to the police.

After the case, Mr Wojtoicz said: “It has been a long wait but I am happy today that justice has been done.”

Detective Constable Julia Tiplady, of Bradford South CID, said: “I am relieved for the victim that he has now received a conclusion. The sentences reflect the serious nature of the offence. Both the victim and the police are pleased with the result of this case.”

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Polish man wanted by Interpol arrested in West Reading

A Polish man wanted by Interpol was arrested by police last night following an hour-long chase through West Reading.

The 27-year-old fled after being stop checked by Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) Ella Botkowska at 10.15pm on Tuesday.

Officers from the Oxford Road neighbourhood team set off in hot pursuit and were quickly assisted by sniffer dogs and the police helicopter.

The chase continued through Catherine Street and Curzon Street before he was arrested at 11.30pm and taken into custody.

The Polish national – wanted by Interpol on assault and fraud charges – has been handed over to City of Westminster police.

Neighbourhood specialist officer PC Richard Carter said: “This is a great result which shows really good team work.

"Because of PCSO Botkowska’s stop and search we were able to arrest a man who is wanted by Interpol on serious assault and fraud offences.

“She reacted very quickly, contacting the control room and getting the resources that were needed.

“Quite a few fences were damaged in the pursuit so we would like to reassure residents in the area who may have been concerned about what was going on last night that the suspect is now in custody.

“It was not an easy search, it was dark and he was moving pretty fast, which is why the assistance from the police dogs and helicopter teams is invaluable in cases like this.”

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Polish Ponzi scheme revealed in Great Britain, millions lost

There is a new potential financial scandal regarding a company called Digit Serve (DS), which was established in Great Britain by one of the most infamous businessmen of the 1990s in Poland, namely Boguslaw Bagsik.

The venture, controlled by the former creator of Art-B, has been operating as a type of financial ponzi scheme, similar to the fund of convicted criminal Bernard Madoff.

The company allegedly collected zl.41 million from numerous investors, but returned a sum of only zl.13 million and does not have the remaining capital. For over two years, DS has attracted over 120 people who invested sums ranging from zl.100,000 to zl.2.7 million.

According to Puls Biznesu, only a few had their funds returned, while most of the clients lost more than 50% of the invested money, and 50 clients lost everything they paid in. The prosecutor is investigating the issue and key decisions are to be made in September.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

CBS arrest 60 year old with 300kg of marijuana

The Katowice division of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBS) has managed to intercept a gang which has smuggled at least 300kg of marijuana worth zl.12 million over the past eight months from the Netherlands.

The oldest gangster was 60 years old, and was pretending to be a tourist.

The CBS officers had been following his vehicle for several hours, and stopped him when he finally arrived in Chorzów to unload the drugs.

At the same time another group of officers detained the head of the gang and three delivery men working for him. They also found 16kg of marijuana as well as other drugs in the warehouse. The criminals now face up to 10 years in jail.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Polish farm investigated over allegations of selling dog lard

A man and woman from a village near Czwstochowa are facing animal cruelty charges after it was discovered they may have been producing smalec (lard) from dog fat.

Police and veterinary inspectors, tipped off by an animal charity, searched the outbuildings to find the rotting remains of dogs strewn across the floor and around 28 dogs which were kept in cages, some so overweight they were struggling to stand.

Another room contained machinery, an axe and bloodied clothes, along with a fridge containing bottles of lard.

“I don't even want to think about what happened here, It makes your hair stand on end,” a police scientist was quoted by Reuters as saying.

The jars containing the lard have now been sent away for tests, to confirm that they contents come from canines and not, as one of the suspects insists, pig fat.

Smalec is usually made from pig lard, but it is believed the owners of the farm had taken advantage of an old belief that the fat of dogs has special medicinal properties.

Renata Mizera, head of the “For Animals” Foundation, which was investigating the farm had heard of the practice in Poland. “We know of places in Poland where dogs are killed as part of a tradition going back generations,” she said. “Dog fat is thought to be good for lung diseases and other illnesses. It's also good business. A half-liter bottle can go for about zl.145.”

The surviving dogs have been taken away and are being cared for by the Foundation For Animals, until new homes are found for them.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Criminals turned informants report rampant corruption

Rzeczpospolita has revealed the findings of research which was carried out by former Deputy Interior Minister Zbigniew Rau.

The report includes the testimonies of two-thirds of the nearly 100 criminals who, in exchange for reduced penalties, have agreed to act as informants and testify against former partners in crime.

According to the report, 85% claim that the criminal group of which they were a member had a corrupt police officer working for them. A study from 2001 reported this figure at 96%. Moreover, one third of the criminals who participated in the research said that they have met a corrupt representative of higher authority, such as a Sejm deputy, Senator, Mayor or Minister.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Poll on corruption: Poles are corrupt!

Every eleventh Pole admits having given a bribe, while three years ago every seventh citizen admitted this.

The most corrupt areas appear to be politics, the health sector and justice (Ta Daaaa!). Despite the fact that most Poles believe that corruption is a serious problem, there is a strong drop by 24% in terms of those who believe that the crime should be severly punished.

Grazyna Kopinska from the Batory Foundation claims that moral assessment of bribery has not changed for years and polls which show a decreasing share of those admitting giving bribes is the result of penalties "[that are ] very fierce," said prof. Wlodzimierz Wróbel from Jagiellonian University.

Poles have negative opinions on the anti-corruption activities of the government headed by Julia Pitera, who is losing social trust, while the Central Anticorruption Bureau (CBA) is positively assessed by 41 percent of those polled.

Friday, August 14, 2009

In the spotlight: Lew Rywin

The Central Anticorruption Bureau (CBA) last week detained prominent Polish film producer Lew Rywin on a number of counts that, according to the media, could result a jail term of up to 10 years. Nine other people, including Rywin’s son, were detained as well.

Rywin, who helped produce films such as Roman Polanski’s “The Pianist” and Steven Spielberg’s “Schindler’s List,” was at the center of one of biggest corruption scandals in recent Polish history when he tried to solicit a $17.5 (zl.55.49) million bribe from Gazeta Wyborcza-publisher Agora to influence a media bill in the firm’s favor. In 2004 Rywin was sentenced to two years in prison but after serving 43 days he was temporarily released on health grounds. He returned to jail after an appeal was dismissed and was finally paroled in November 2006.

The latest detention, which was executed at the request of the Appeal Prosecutor’s Office in Lódz, is the result of a two-year investigation into alleged illegal activities, including the falsification of medical documentation in order to obstruct legal proceedings in criminal cases. The Appeal Prosecutor’s Office has already brought a number of charges against the 10 detainees, although the details of these charges have not yet been revealed to the public. A court in Lódz last Wednesday decided to arrest Rywin and the nine other detainees for three months.

A representative of the Appeal Prosecutor’s Office in Lódz told journalists there would certainly be more detentions in the case. Approximately 100 people, including several top lawyers, are now thought to have been involved in a far-reaching scheme that involved, among other things, the payment of bribes worth around zl.700,000 and falsification of medical documentation. These are alleged to have helped well-known Polish gangsters avoid arrest and jail.

As WBJ went to press, Rywin’s exact role in the scandal was not yet known but a number of Polish media outlets had reported that in 2005 he may have tried to offer a zl.210,000 bribe to doctors in order to secure a delay or otherwise influence his prison sentence on grounds of poor health.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Polish man killed himself on remand for knife threat to wife

A 29-YEAR-OLD man arrested for threatening his wife with a kitchen knife committed suicide in prison after being remanded in custody.

Police were called to the home of Oktawian Stepka after he came home drunk, accused his wife of having a lover and threatened to kill her and her "lover".

Emilia Jakubiak told officers on the day of the offence, Wednesday, June 3, her husband returned to their home in Birchwood Avenue, Hatfield, drunk at 5pm.

She was asleep on the sofa when Stepka, who had been drinking for three days, woke her up and tried to hug her.

His wife told police she told him: “Get off me, you stink,” and told him she wanted a divorce.

Stepka asked her if she had a lover and threatened to kill him and her.

He then went to the kitchen and tried to light a cigarette from a gas hob, which she told him was a dangerous thing to do.

His wife told police at that point her Polish husband picked up a bread knife and started waving it at her. She left the room and dialled 999, but Stepka was gone before officers arrived.

He was arrested a little while later and in interview said that the night before he had drunk half a bottle of whisky and four beers.

He claimed his wife told him she had been seeing another man for four years.

Stepka admitted in the past he had pleaded guilty to assaulting his wife and punching her in the face while on holiday in Egypt.

Stepka, who had a surgical implant to cure an alcohol problem, committed suicide in custody on Tuesday, July 21, after being charged with affray.

During a hearing at St Albans Magistrates Court today Helena Lewer, for the prosecution, said the Crown could only formally discontinue proceedings against the deceased after a death certificate is provided.

Chairman of the bench Mrs Munro adjourned proceedings for two weeks until Wednesday, August 18, for the death certificate to be sent to the Crown.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Kwasniewski under SB surveillance

Even before 1989, the communist Secret Service was watching over future president of Poland, Aleksander Kwasniewski.

The Secret Service (SB) was almost obsessed with Aleksander Kwasniewski’s ethnic origin – suspecting his father of being a Jew. SB officers carefully inspected the life history of Zdzislaw Kwasniewski and noted down that, in 1950s and 60s, he worked closely with “Jewish circles” and admitted in “trusted company” to being a Jew.

The communist Secret Service also held Jolanta Kwasniewska, the future first lady, under surveillance. They established that she worked in a Swedish-Polish company PAAT, which produced goods for the USSR market. In 1988, Kwasniewska officially earned only 85,000 zloty a month (not much at that time) but, according to the SB informants, her real salary was much higher.

“I’m surprised, outraged and shocked,” said General Wojciech Jaruzelski, former Polsh President, in a response to the SB documents on Kwasniewski. “Secret Service knew that Aleksander Kwasniewski was a promising man. In April 1989, I introduced him to Mikhail Gorbachev. He went to Moscow as my right-hand man. It’s unbelievable that a month later some ‘brutes’ from the SB, as there is no other word to describe them, were spying on a man related so closely to me and Mieczyslaw Rakowski”, said Jaruzelski.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Corruption in Polish aviation?

The Ministry of Infrastructure has started an inspection of the Civil Aviation Office in connection with an investigation into corruption.

On Tuesday, the Central Anticorruption Bureau detained six employees of the Civil Aviation Office – members of the Aviation Board of Examiners and a lecturer. Those detained are suspected of taking bribes in return for giving credits at a pilot licence exam.

The investigation into the case started after a training company Aviation Asset Management had filed a notice of an offence at the Warsaw Prosecutor’s Office.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Nasza Klasa loses lawsuit, to pay fine

The popular Polish social networking website has lost a lawsuit and will be required to pay 5,000 zloty (1,200 euro) damages for allowing a fictional profile of a Polish man to exist.

Joanna Gajewska, press spokesperson from the website, claims that the company does not agree with the decision of the Wroclaw District courts but will not release an official statement until receives the written decision.

According to the court order, the company will be required to pay the fine, court fees and provide an official apology to the man who found his false profile on the networking site in March 2008. The person who impersonated the man and set up a profile used the site to send hurtful emails to other users of the portal. The information found on the profile was accurate, including name, surname, age, telephone number and photographs.

The man took to court when, after several attempts for a few months to contact the company, site administrators did not remove the false profile. According to the court, the man’s public image and character were damaged. The 5,000 zloty fine mandated by the court is only ten percent of the sum demanded by the man. This is the first success in such a case in Poland.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

111 Polish hooligans arrested in Copenhagen

One hundred and eleven Polish football hooligans have been arrested in the capital of Denmark following aggression and near-rioting before Thursday night’s Europa Legue match.

Poland’s Legia Warszawa team faced off against Denmark’s Broendby Copenhagen Thursday in the first leg of a third-round qualifier. The match took place in Warsaw and ended in a 1:1 draw.

Before the match, stimulated fans’ energy became aggressive and near-rioting broke out. One hundred eleven Poles were detained. Five amongst them were arrested and will stand in court today for sentencing. The rest were freed.

Police were forced to use tear gas to break up the violence.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Eighteen people injured in bus crash in Poland

Eighteen people were injured on Sunday when a bus collided with a minivan in southern Poland, local police said.

According to preliminary information, the minivan swerved into the oncoming lane and collided with the bus, police spokesman Rafal Biczysko said.

The bus was traveling from Tarnowskie Gory in the Silesia Voevodship province to Gliwice, a city near Katowice. Seven people are in a serious condition, the spokesman said.

An investigation into the incident is underway.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Two (more) officials detained in Polish soccer corruption probe

Polish police detained a top-level referee and an assistant Tuesday as part of an ongoing investigation into corruption in domestic soccer.

The two were detained in the northeastern city of Suwalki. They were identified only as Cezary S. and Krzysztof G., in line with Poland's privacy law.

They were being driven to prosecutors in Wroclaw, where they would be questioned and charges could be filed, said Temistokles Brodowski, spokesman for the Central Anti-Corruption Office.

Wroclaw prosecutors began investigating soccer corruption in 2005. So far they have charged over 230 people suspected of fixing games. Among them are members of the Polish Football Federation, coaches, referees and players.

Earlier this year, a Wroclaw court handed prison terms of up to four years to 17 people, including club officials and referees in the largest corruption trial in Polish soccer history.

Footballers and referees interrogated on corruption charges

In a related story, Polskie Radio tells us that Rafal D., former football at the small RKS Radomsko football club has been detained by police in Lodz in connection with the on-going investigation into corruption in Polish football.

Rafal D. and two other football players from the same football club in south-central Poland, Bogdan J. and Radoslaw K., as well as the First Division referee Cezary S. and referee’s assistant Krzysztof G. will be interrogated later today.

Over 230 people – players, referees, officials and members of the Football Federation (PZPN) – have been charged so far for being involved in match fixing schemes since the investigation was launched four years ago.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Central Investigation Bureau has confiscated over 40 kg of drugs

Central Investigation Bureau (CB?) agents have secured over 40 kilograms of drugs and more than 1.3 thousand seedlings of cannabis. The black market value of those drugs is over 1.3 million zloty (300 thousand Euro).

In two days agents stopped seven people in vicinity of Cracow, Wroclaw and Lublin that are suspected to cooperate with this illicit cannabis plantation.

The Police informed that part of detained people were previously penalized for drug related crimes. This time they face up to 8 years behind bars for drug possession.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Polish 7 year old stuffed with amphetamine

A seven years old girl was taken to the hospital because of amphetamine poisoning. Parents testified that a little girl had widened orbs, she sweated excessively and talked a lot. Unofficial sources say that the little girl could take amphetamine during a family party.

Policemen told TVN24 news channel that they needed couple of hours to determine who the owner of the amphetamine was. They also want to know if the girl has taken the drug herself or was she given it by one of guests.
The incident happened during an open air party with girl's parents and their friends.

The girl feels fine right now. She had to have her stomach pumped.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

In Poland, Symbols of the Third Reich are not illegal

“Polish penalty code does not forbid to sell or produce symbols of the Third Reich” – said prosecutor – Jan Przystupa from Wroclaw.

According to investigators form The Internal Security Agency in Wroclaw it is not illegal to produce and sell things symbolizing the Third Reich. In 2005 the agency found out that one of jeweller’s workshops was producing replicas of Hitlerian orders, decorations and signet rings with skulls. These commodities were ordered by a German citizen who assured that he was a collector.

As it turned out, all replicas were sold through a German Internet website, working on Polish server. It is not allowed to sell similar goods in Germany. In Poland they will go unpunished. Also the biggest Polish Internet portal “Allegro” decided to ban all people who describes their items with words connected with totalitarianism. On the other hand they cannot forbid to sell those thinks because of Polish law.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Polish football league ranked 77th

Polish football league has been ranked 77th among 100 leagues by International Federation of Football History & Statistics – IFFHS.

The Polish Ekstraklasa has been ranked lower than leagues of such countries as Uzbekistan, Angola, Chile, Belarus or Hungary. This shows a sad reality that our football, with no training specialist, corrupt referees and hooligans at many stadiums has also adjusted its sport value to those negative phenomena.

However not all people see it this way. A spokesperson for Ekstraklasa drian Skubis said: “It is a great mistake to compare leagues from different continents. For example in Uzbekistan there is one club that wins everything in domestic league and cups for years now. For this reason this club is ranked higher than any other Polish club, which has to compete at a higher level with many equal rivals. For this reason this ranking does not make sense.”

There might be a pinch of truth in that as all Polish clubs are desperate to play in Ekstraklasa, because of the prestige and money. However the uprising defeat of Wisla Cracow by the Eastland Champions yesterday shows a painful truth. Polish league football is in a crisis that was not ever seen before and if nothing changes the situation can be even worse.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Defense Ministry accused of large scale nepotism

Defense Minister Bogdan Klich has employed local Civic Platform (PO) members and his friends in military institutions in Kraków, reads a report in Rzeczpospolita.

After this fact was revealed the opposition and the media accused Klich of nepotism and violating political standards.

Defense Ministry spokesman Robert Rochowicz explained that all those were employed through open competition, and that people who were appointed fulfilled all requirements. Meanwhile, the Minister for battling corruption Julia Pitera, has questioned this statement and declared that the competitions have to be held again.

The employees in question are being dismissed and the Ministry was requested to introduce new procedures in relation to employing new people.

Defense industry could slash jobs

And, in a related story, a fall in orders from the military could force defense-sector companies to slash their workforces this year. Rzeczpospolita reports that up to 5,000 people in the industries could be made redundant.

Around 400 workers at tank producer Czolgowe Zaklady Mechaniczne Bumar ?ab?dy have exited the firm. By the end of the year a total of around 800 workers will have to leave Bumar Group, which currently employs 2,800.

Airplane parts producer WSK Rzeszów and PZL Wola, an engine producer, could each shed around 300 people.

“Other defense industry companies and research institutes regularly cut jobs, but without publicity,” Malgorzata Kucab from trade union NSZZ Military Workers told the daily.

Pawel Soroka, of the Eugeniusz Kwiatkowski Polish Industrial Lobby, told Rzeczpospolita that he calculated around 5,000 jobs would be lost in the military manufacturing sector in the coming months, out of approximately 46,000 jobs in the industry.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Belchatów coal plant in Poland is Europe's dirtiest

Poland is once again making headlines, but perhaps there's little to be proud of – Europe's dirtiest energy plant is located on Polish soil.

The Belchatów coal plant belched 30.9 million tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere in 2008. The plant is run by state-owned utility BOT Elektrownia.

Poland is not the only offender, however. Germany has 11 of Europe's 30 most polluting facilities.

In 2008, Europe's 30 dirtiest plants produced a collective 387.8 million tonnes of CO2 in 2008, down 1.9 percent from 2007.

The information was published in the annual “Dirty Thirty” list produced by World Wildlife Fund International since 2005.