Saturday, January 09, 2010

Mysterious death of hitman turned state witness

From: WBJ
Artur Zirajewski, aka "Iwan" – the star prosecution witness in case of the 1998 murder of Police General Marek Papala – died in a Gdansk police station on Sunday in “mysterious circumstances.”

It was Mr Zirajewski, a professional hitman, who informed the police about the meeting during which Edward Mazur, a Polish businessman living in the United States, allegedly offered to pay $40,000 for the death of Mr Papala.

Thanks to Iwan's testimony, the police could press charges against Mr Mazur and several gangsters from the Pruszków mafia who were also said to be involved.

According to Piotr Krusi?ski, a specialist in penal law at the Warsaw University, it is now very unlikely that those responsible for Mr Papala's death will be brought to justice. "While Iwan's testimony will be used in court, the defense attorneys of the accused will do their best to prove them incredulous," Mr Krusilski said.

Iwan's death will be investigated by a special committee appointed by the Justice Minister.