Judge Recorded Taking Bribes Passes Vetting

Today, the Democratic Party denounced the Independent Qualification Commission (KPK) ruling that reinstated judge Ilir Toska, who has been recorded receiving bribes in exchange for leniency towards a corrupt judge. The KPK recently published the verdict on its website.

Via a press statement, Democratic MP and former Minister of Justice Enkelejd Alibeaj declared:

Judge Ilir Toska, [Prime Minister] Edi Rama’s candidate for the High Judicial Council has been deemed by intelligence services and institutions as unfit for duty and should be dismissed by the vetting body. As stated in the official report, Ilir Toska, Edi Rama’s candidate for the High Judicial Council, “turns out to be someone who may be pressured by criminal structures.” Nonetheless he successfully passed the vetting, per Edi Rama’s orders.

The intelligence services’ official report is based on an audio and video recording, in which Ilir Toska is involved in corruption. According to evidence presented to vetting institutions, it turns out that the State Information Service had provided then President Alfred Moisiu and Minister of Justice Fatmir Xhafaj with an audiovisual recording, in which Ilir Toska, then lead inspector of the High Judicial Council, via the mediation of a Ministry of Internal Affairs employee, received bribes in exchange for deciding against disciplinary measures for a corrupt judge.

Appeals Court judge Toska was reconfirmed by KPK on June 21, 2018, despite a negative assessment from the National Security Agency (DSIK) regarding his background check, and several discrepancies in his wealth declaration.

KPK did not take into account six citizen complaints filed against Toska, either.

According to the opposition, Toska’s case is not the only case that exposes KPK’s double standards and Rama’s hold over the vetting process.

“The Democratic Party will keep exposing the corruption of this process by Edi Rama, whose main purpose is the seizing the judiciary system in order to use it to protect corruption and organised crime, the means by which he governs the country,” Alibeaj concluded.