Last straw? Mlejnek was caught on wiretaps, he observed corrupt practices

Last straw? Mlejnek was caught on wiretaps, he observed corrupt practices
Last straw? Mlejnek was caught on wiretaps, he observed corrupt practices

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Petr Mlejnek, head of civil intelligence, announced his resignation just a few hours after Seznam Zpráv reporters tried to confront him with other doubts about his professional life. Specifically: they questioned him about his role in the Techniserv case.

Mlejnek worked for more than ten years in the private company Techniserv, whose three high-ranking managers were tried for corrupt practices. And in the end, they were convicted without much media attention.

List The reports have now studied all the judgments issued and the evidence that was discussed during the public court hearing of the cases that have now been legally closed.

At the same time, Mlejnka’s integrity is most threatened by the document in the file marked as Pavouci_10.

Mlejnek: Is there an agreement?

On April 11, 2016, it was Monday, Petr Mlejnek met with today’s convicted Tomáš Dostál, Michael Hrbata and two other managers in the Prague office of Techniserv. In the tenth minute of the wiretapping, Tomáš Dostál and Petr Mlejnek took the floor.

They were debating how to win one of the selected public contracts. And basically from the beginning they only talked about illegal ways. First, they discussed the possibility of secretly colluding with competitors. That is, that they would secure the so-called bushes and in fact conclude a kind of cartel agreement. Criminal law qualifies such a trick as “tampering with a public tender”.

The end of the head of ÚZSI

The head of civil intelligence, Petr Mlejnek, is leaving his post after less than two months. “He had all the prerequisites to perform the function of director well. Which he has been able to do with his work over the past month and a half,” said Minister of the Interior Vít Rakušan (STAN).

“Now we want to compete at the MMR, Roman is preparing it there, he is there, he is preparing it now,” Tomáš Dostál opens the topic (we present a verbatim transcript of the monitored meetings as the judges got to know them).

And Petr Mlejnek, strategic manager at the time, proposed an agreement with the competition. First, he tries to be careful not to use names: “Is there a deal, is there a deal, is there a deal with that? So that he doesn’t get into it.”

Dostal did not immediately understand who Mlejnek meant. And so he asked who she meant. Mlejnk’s caution went aside at that moment. “With Jesus… He talked about those lights,” he adds. Dan Jež is the head of the competing company Gating, which wanted to participate in the selection process (and by the way, his name also appears in the Dosimeter case). But Dostál did not like Mlejnk’s proposal. He had one major problem. It was impossible to keep track of who all would participate in the tender, and the agreement with everyone could be complicated.

“Yeah, already, they’ve already put in a request, like yeah. But we are through the supplier, we changed the lights, we are in agreement with the supplier and we are in agreement that we will integrate it. I don’t know if Roman made an agreement directly with Jež, but there will be more. It will be open to the public, yes,” says Dostál. After a while, he convinced Mlejnka that a cartel agreement was not necessary. They allegedly had another trump card in their hands.

They participated in the drafting of the tender documentation and wanted to insert a parameter into the tender that no one else could fulfill. Which Dostal Mlejnek explains with the words: “So there is no point in negotiating for one (supplier). But Roman has caught it through the light manufacturer. He will put some lights there that are specific,” says Dostál. Mlejnka was satisfied with the explanation and they continued to talk about other jobs.

Penalties for five people

The police eavesdropped on the company for several weeks, then raided it in May 2016. The Prague courts “wrangled” the case between them until the spring of 2021, when the final judgment was handed down. Three managers of Techniserv – Michael Hrbat, Tomáš Dostál and Roman Šmíd – were punished by the court for the crime of negotiating an advantage in the awarding of a public contract, which they committed during tenders for the network infrastructure of the Czech Trade Inspection and a construction contract at the Ministry for Regional Development.

And according to the judgment, Miroslav Burda from the Czech Trade Inspection and Marta Reichlová from the Ministry for Regional Development should have helped them in this, who arranged for Techniserv’s managers to access the order parameters a month before they were published.

As the server has read in the past from the judgments obtained with the help of the Act on Public Access to Information, public contracts were supposed to affect, for example, thousand-koruna banknotes in a paper bag. On one of the other wiretaps, for example, it was said: “I know they are small, but if the Czech Trade Inspectorate lost a million or two a year…” As the list of orders shows, Techniserv has repeatedly succeeded in the state administration and, for example, supplied the Ministry of Defense with technology for hundreds of millions crowns.

“Mlejnek also went there”

However, Mlejnek himself was never charged in the case. And in the judgments his name appears only once. This is when the court cites the defense of the convicted Hrbata (by the way, a former member of the ODS and deputy minister of defense), who claimed that the bag he left for the official was not a bribe, but a gift. “The handbags were handed out by every merchant in the company, it’s a normal common practice to say thank you, the wines are legally bought. Mr. Dostál, Petr Mlejnek also went there, there was never anything illegal in it,” reads one of the judgments.

Seznam The News asked Mlejenko, at that time still the head of civilian intelligence, on Tuesday at three in the afternoon to explain his role in the case. He read the text message but did not respond to it. On Wednesday morning, he announced his resignation after 54 days in office. Without further explanation.

Photo: List of News

SMS message to Petar Mlejnk from reporter Janko Kroupa.

According to the wiretaps, Mlejnek had detailed information about the progress of his colleagues. He did not turn to the police, even though the crime of corruption and manipulation of public contracts is subject to a reporting obligation.

It has one exception – it applies to those who could bring criminal charges on themselves.

At the same time, even the Techniserv company itself avoided prosecution, although in similar cases prosecutors try to prosecute legal entities as well. Why? It is impossible to find out. “It is not possible to provide information from non-public preliminary proceedings relating to specific persons,” Aleš Cimbala, the spokesman for the Prague City Prosecutor’s Office, avoided a direct answer.

Three doubts surrounding Petr Mlejenko:

1. Contacts with Redl et al.:

They were opened by Seznam Zpráv’s findings that in previous years he had contacts with people accused in an organized group around Michal Redl. It was not only about Redl, who is considered the head of the accused group, but also, for example, about Pavel Dovhomilja. What kind of business contacts connected him with the unruly Michal Redl is not yet completely clear, but the contacts with Pavel Dovhomilja are illustrated to a certain extent. Seznam Zprávy wrote last week that Mlejnek communicated with this man, who is seeking the position of cooperating accused in Dosimeter, about licenses for the company AŽD. It was at the end of last year, while already in the first months of this year, Mlejnek became a candidate for the post of director of the secret service, from which he is now leaving.

2. Work at Techniserv:

After leaving the military secret service, Petr Mlejnek became the manager of Techniserv. It is a company that bids for public contracts on a large scale, for two of them – it was a contract for the Czech Trade Inspection and for the Ministry of Regional Development – the police deployed their people and detained several people in 2016. The case reached court, where three managers of Techniserv were convicted of corruption (the case definitively ended in February 2021). As it turns out, the investigation also affected Petr Mlejenko, even though he was not charged in the case. The police also caught him on wiretaps deployed in the case. And the recording of the wiretapping proves that Petr Mlejnek actively participated in the manipulation of orders, which resulted in the conviction of his colleagues for corruption.

The Aktuály server brought information that Mlejnka’s wife also has suspicious business contacts. In 2017, Mlejnková became a one-quarter co-owner of the company Dyn Tedes, which provides protection against eavesdropping. Another 40 percent is owned by the wife of Luďek Vokál, a former detective of the Organized Crime Investigation Unit, who was legally punished by the court a few months ago in the Vidkun case for corruption and leaking information from police files. Mlejnek admitted that his wife figured in the company. According to him, however, it ended its operation when it sold its stake on June 28 of this year. Luděk Vokál was finally sentenced in April this year, roughly two months before Mlejnk’s wife got rid of her share in the company, according to him.

An exceptionally comprehensive file…

In this context, the list of reports addressed all the judges and prosecutors who dealt with this case. But they no longer remember specific details, or they do not want to comment on them with reference to confidentiality.

“I don’t recall the name of the person you mentioned (Peter Mlejnka) ever being mentioned in the proceedings, in any context. However, it should be noted that the wiretaps were played during the main trial in the second half of 2019, many of them were of poor technical quality, the file material was extremely comprehensive, and so it is possible that what was stated there played an insignificant role in relation to the subject of the evidence. but I simply don’t remember it anymore,” said judge Libor Holý from the District Court for Prague 10.

Prosecutor Ondřej Vlha, who supervised this case, did not want to answer the questions at all. And judge Jaroslav Cihlář from the Prague Municipal Court, who dealt with the appeal in this case, stated that he is not exempted from confidentiality in order to talk about persons involved in criminal proceedings that are not directly related to criminal activity.

The article is in Czech

Tags: straw Mlejnek caught wiretaps observed corrupt practices

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