Minister Horvat Denies Guilt, Anti-Corruption Office Demands Remand in Custody

By 19 February 2022
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ZAGREB, 19 Feb 2022 - Construction Minister Darko Horvat said he was not guilty of abuse of office during Saturday's questioning at the USKOK anti-corruption office, according to his attorney, while USKOK demanded he be remanded in custody.

Horvat's attorney Vladimir Terešak told the press his client answered all the questions. "He believes that he did not commit the crime he is being accused of and that no one made any illegal gains."

Later today a Zagreb County Court judge will decide whether to remand Horvat in custody.

Terešak said he did not know on what grounds USKOK was demanding remand.

He said Horvat was being accused of abuse of office and powers, specifically, that certain companies which applied to a tender were given right of priority regardless of the required documents.

Horvat is denying that and claims that the ministry's services handled that and not him, he added.

Terešak said Horvat was accused of abuse of office alongside a number of persons and that all the evidence was from another case in which his former aide Ana Mandac, a suspect in this case, was also accused.

"The minister doesn't do that, but the ministry's expert services. He knows neither how many points one has nor is he acquainted with it. He signed what the expert service, that is (Mandac), gave him to sign, believing it was right."

Mandac was relieved of duty after becoming a suspect in the wind park case alongside former state secretary Josipa Rimac. According to the media, the accused in that case have started plea-bargaining.

According to unofficial information, the police are investigating Deputy Prime Minister Boris Milošević besides Horvat.

Hina has learned from sources close to the investigation that the police are also investigating Regional Development and EU Funds Ministry state secretary Velimir Žunac, the director of the administration for assisted areas, Katica Mišković, and former minister Tomislav Tolušić.

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