The Slovak minister who helped kidnap a businessman

In July 2017, a Vietnamese man, Trinh Xuan Thanh, was kidnapped on a Berlin street. After a few days he ended up in Bratislava, Slovakia where he was beaten, drugged and put in a Slovak government plane to Moscow, police officers say.

Ria Gehrerová
Ria Gehrerová Denník N, Slovakia
Source: Denník N
The Slovak minister who helped kidnap a businessman - NewsMavens
Trinh Xuan Thanh, YouTube

Why this story matters:

When the Geman police started talking about the possibility that the former Slovak Minister of Interior Robert Kaliňák might have helped kidnap a Vietnamese citizen from Berlin to Vietnam, many found it incredible.

Yes, the government had undergone many scandals, but most of them were financial.

This one is different. Trinh Xuan Thanh was kidnapped, beaten, drugged and sent back to Vietnam where he received a second life sentence.

This is not just about money anymore, this is about what members of the Slovak government do for their own benefit.

The article recommended below provides a detailed account of how the kidnapping was carried out and includes information from Slovak and German investigators involved in the case.

Details from the story:

  • Trinh Xuan Thanh was kidnapped on July 23, 2017 in Berlin. Two men dragged him into a van with a Czech license plate and drove off. Later he is driven to Bratislava, Slovakia.
  • Robert Kaliňák is the former Minister of Interior. He stepped down in March 2018. When the abduction took part, he was still in the office.
  • According to the police officers who witnessed the abduction, Kaliňák knew about it and partially managed it.
  • Trinh Xuan Thanh was wanted by the Vietnamese government for financial losses occured during his employment with a state-owned company. Lawyers for Thanh say the charges were politically motivated.

Project #Femfacts co-financed by European Commission Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology as part of the Pilot Project – Media Literacy For All

The information and views set out on this website are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of the European Union. Neither the European Union institutions and bodies nor any person acting on their behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of the information contained therein.

NewsMavens is a media start-up within Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland's largest liberal broadsheet published by Agora S.A. NewsMavens is currently financed by Gazeta Wyborcza and Google DNI Fund.
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