Opposition MP Rajtar to File Criminal Complaint for Potential Tax Fraud

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Opposition MP Rajtar Files Criminal Complaint against Basternak (photo by TASR)

Bratislava, May 16 (TASR) – Opposition MP Jozef Rajtar (Freedom and Solidarity/SaS) told a news conference in Bratislava on Monday that he’s filing a criminal complaint concerning potential tax fraud, adding that this concerns tax arrears of over €2 million caused by machinations that haven’t yet been investigated.

The tax arrears relate to constructor of the Bonaparte residential complex in Bratislava Ladislav Basternak, then authorised representative of a company called Real Forum Invest. “The tax arrears of this firm amount to over €2 million, which is information verified on the Financial Directorate’s website. Ladislav Basternak was an authorised representative of this firm between March 2009 and March 2013. Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer-SD) has been renting an apartment from this person, too,” said Rajtar.

As Real Forum Invest was mainly showing losses, its arrears “probably didn’t arise from profit, but as arrears due to excessive VAT deductions,” said Rajtar. “I’ll file a criminal complaint probably as early as on Tuesday (May 17) so that the police can investigate this firm of Ladislav Basternak as well. We’re talking about a suspected tax fraud that might have been committed by an organised group. Interior Minister Robert Kalinak [Smer-SD] officially suggested to me in the House that I should file a criminal complaint, so I’m doing that,” stressed Rajtar.

Rajtar said that the case of Real Forum Invest has certain features in common with a company called Real Studio K.F.A. Bratislava, known from a scandal involving Bratislava’s Five Star Residence complex that concerned suspicions of illegal VAT deductions. “These [companies] have been registered in the names of citizens of the Thai kingdom. Who will the tax office claim the overdue sums from?” asked Rajtar.

Fellow Opposition MP Daniel Lipsic (OLaNO-NOVA) believes that if Parliament could set up so-called inquiry committees, it would prevent scandals like this from being swept under the carpet. He said that there are only two countries in the EU, namely Malta and Slovakia, in which such committees don’t exist. The Opposition has submitted an amendment to the Slovak Constitution that would allow for setting up inquiry committees as early as during the May session of the House. “Robert Fico also proposed inquiry committees in the past,” added Lipsic.