Kosovo Prosecutor Opens Ruling Party Wiretap Probe

Kosovo’s chief prosecutor opened an investigation after a website published excerpts of wiretapped phone conversations that allegedly show that the ruling party controls key state jobs.

Kosovo’s chief prosecutor Aleksander Lumezi said on Tuesday that he has ordered an analysis of the wiretap excerpts that were published the previous day to see whether any criminal offences had been committed.

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Kosovo’s chief prosecutor Aleksander Lumezi

“All the material that has been published is already in the hands of prosecutors… They will look into this to see whether a criminal prosecution can start and whether there are elements of a criminal offence,” said Lumezi.
Lumezi added that he had heard that “the wiretaps’ origin is an investigation into a criminal case that was conducted earlier and they probably came from there”.
The brief extracts published on Monday by the Pristina-based media website Insajderi.com allegedly reveal how Adem Grabovci, head of the parliamentary group of Kosovo’s ruling Democratic Party of Kosovo, PDK, influenced employment and appointments in top public service positions.
Insajderi.com claims the recordings show he influenced the appointment of several senior people in the prosecutorial and court system, and in the Kosovo police.
Grabovci on Monday accused the EU rule-of-law mission in Kosovo, EULEX, of being responsible for the leak.
Insajderi.com said it has more than 1,000 recordings of Grabovci’s phone conversations during November and December 2011.
It says they were taped during a EULEX investigation into Grabovci over allegations of involvement in organised crime, abuse of official authority and other criminal offences during his term as deputy minister of transport and telecommunications between 2008 and 2011.
BIRN contacted EULEX for confirmation of the authenticity of the phone recordings.

EULEX declined to comment on the case saying it does not comment on the evidence linked to ongoing trials.
Insajderi.com has said it will publish the Grabovci’s recordings in their entirety in the coming days.

Balkan Insight

2 August, 2016