Ziobro defends TV Trwam. “Harassment and surveillance directly from the Lukashenka regime”

A criminal trial for failure to disclose public information by the Lux Veritatis Foundation run by the Redemptorists was due to begin Thursday. It concerns data of support from the government and other public institutions. Father Tadeusz Rydzyk appeared in the District Court in Torun, where his hearing was scheduled to take place in the form of a video conference. However, the session was postponed due to official reasons. The next introductory session is scheduled for the end of June.

A sub-indictment against Lux Veritatis board members, including Father Tadeusz Rydzyk, was brought in court by Watchdog Polska Civic Network in June last year. – Despite its commitment, the Foundation did not provide us with public information about its expenditures financed from public funds – explained Shimon Osofsky of the organization. Since 2003, Watchdog Polska has dealt, inter alia, with access to public information and legal assistance on this subject, monitoring of selected areas of public life.

Several days ago, the trial was the number one topic on air on Telewizja Trwam and Radio Maryja. Guests are invited to criticize the trial and the organization itself that sued the institution.

According to Zbigniew Ziobro, “We are dealing with a phenomenon in which organizations, which are often funded from external sources outside Poland, perform the tasks entrusted to them by sponsors who provide financial security for the work of these entities.” Like Father Tadeusz Redzek, he criticized the IAEA, asserting that “when we deal with external financing, it is often difficult to ascertain who is really responsible for the subsequent activity of these institutions.”

– These entities often show excessive activity expressed in overstepping the bounds of the law specified in the Public Information Access Act – the prosecutor argued on Radio Maríja and ruled that “the classic example is the experience of Lux Veritatis, which became the subject of harassment by Watchdog Association Poland”. – It is difficult to call it otherwise, given what happens at the stage of criminal proceedings – he said, accusing the organization of “arbitrary” and “harassment”.

There is no suspicion of any crime or suspected offense. It is clear and obvious that this is a far-fetched case and that criminal courts are trying to engage in an unfounded and beneficial manner in the persecution of the institution and people who are respected and appreciated in many circles. The Minister of Justice said that these activities are carried out specifically in order to stigmatize, attack and destroy them and to show that criminal charges are making fun of them.

“It’s not about justice and the law, it’s about harassment and surveillance. These are methods taken from the Lukashenka regime. It’s unbelievable that someone would have the courage to formulate such conclusions,” Ziobro added.

The Watchdog Polska Civic Civic Network Association accuses Lux Veritatis of not disclosing public information about its publicly funded expenditures, despite its commitment. In June last year in this case, the network filed a sub-indictment of a crime under Art. 23 of the Law on Access to Public Information in association with Art. 231 Ft. 1 and 2 of the Penal Code. Such an act is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

Details of the extended history of 2016 Watchdog Polska are described on their website. In November 2016, the network submitted a request to the Lux Veritatis Foundation to disclose information on projects financed with public funds since 2008. Under Polish law, public institutions are required to provide data on public expenditures, and according to media reports to the Fr. Rydzyk Foundation under the government has flowed Millions of Law and Justice Act to support, among other things, Traum TV, the construction of the Museum of Memory and Tożsamość im. St. John Paul II, various publications and projects.

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