The trial of the Budapest Public Transport Company (BKV) continued on Tuesday, October 16th which included statements from Miklós Hagyó, the former socialist MP and deputy mayor of Budapest who was responsible for the oversight of BKV from 2006 until 2010.
In response to last week’s testimony from Zsolt Balogh, the former Deputy Mayor said that neither his alibi nor the evidence he submitted during the investigation process were objectively considered by the appropriate authorities, during which he was subjected to a nine-month-long pretrial detention to prevent an alleged attempt to flee the country. Meanwhile, insisted Hagyó, the courts and the investigators readily accepted the verbal accusations of Balogh regardless of that fact that he had provided no substantial evidence for his incriminations.
According to Hagyó, the indictment against him should be acquitted since it was solely based upon the wide-spread accusations throughout the media and verbal statements collected by the investigation authorities during interrogations with Balogh and Attila Antal.
During the previous two weeks, both Balogh and Antal, who served as the CEO for the transportation company until a heart attack in early 2008 brought about his resignation, renounced their previous accusations against Hagyó. According to the two men, both of whom are defendants in the case, they made the statements under duress from the interrogators who allegedly threatened them with more severe pretrial treatment.
Both Hagyó and Balogh, who served as the interim CEO for the ill-stricken Antal from February to August in 2008, have confirmed in their testimonies the extent of their relationship; neither the former Deputy Mayor nor any other person from the Budapest City Council ever wielded any power over the interim CEO. Therefore, Hagyó claimed, Balogh was not pressured by him into overseeing the purportedly conspicuous contracts related to the development of the Budapest subway system.
Hagyó considered it important to point out during Tuesday’s hearing that in Balogh’s written testimony he explained his role within the company when the alleged crimes occurred, “As the [Chief Technical Officer] I had a good perspective on the technological and engineering aspects, but I knew neither the economic and personal issues, nor the transportation and communication aspects.” Many of the contracts in question were considered to be advisory in nature and not directly involved with Balogh’s departments.
Prior to his time as the interim CEO, Balogh had worked as the company’s CTO. During that time, approximately between January 2007 and February 2008, the suspect contracts were created. Among other things, Balogh accused Hagyó of using these contracts for personal or political profit, instead of developing the Budapest subway system.