Disciplinary Chamber says judge Tuleya should not be detained and taken to prosecutor

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TVN24 News in English, TVN24
Manifestacja Obywateli RP przed Sądem NajwyższymTVN24
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TVN24Manifestacja Obywateli RP przed Sądem Najwyższym

"I'm certain judge Adam Roch will allow to have me detained and forcibly taken in" - judge Igor Tuleya told TVN24 on Thursday. The Disciplinary Chamber, not recognised by the Supreme Court, has been examining his case for two days. "That's the cost of fighting to protect the rule of law" - the judge added. However, despite his worst predictions, later that evening, the chamber finally read the verdict, according to which judge Tuleya should not be detained.

In mid-March the National Public Prosecutor's Office asked the Supreme Court Disciplinary Chamber, unrecognised by that very court itself, to detain and forcibly bring in judge Igor Tuleya. The prosecutor's office explained at the time the judge failed thrice to report for interrogation.

Thursday was the second day of proceedings in the case of judge Tuleya held by the Disciplinary Chamber behind closed doors.

Sędzia Igor Tuleya i wspierające go osoby czekają na decyzję nieuznawanej przez sąd Izby DyscyplinarnejTVN24

Just like the previous day, judge Igor Tuleya and his supporters gathered on Thursday in front of the Supreme Court building in Warsaw. The judge told TVN24 that "there's no doubt this decision won't be made today, it wasn't to have been made yesterday, and it won't be taken tomorrow, because the verdict has been already agreed long ago, and it certainly didn't happen within the Supreme Court walls".

"I'm certain Mr Roch ( judge Adam Roch) will allow to have me detained and forcibly taken in. There's no doubt about that" - Tuleya said.

Asked what he planned to do in such case, he replied: "Just like I was never hiding from the so-called Disciplinary Chamber or the prosecutor, I'm not going to hide from police officers, (...) who I presume will be ordered to carry out prosecutor's bidding to have me detained and forcibly take me in".

"This is the cost we're willing to pay. The cost of fighting to protect the rule of law, the people have been paying that price for years. It's high time judges to be ready to pay that price too" - he said.

Judge Tuleya also commented on judge Adam Roch interrupting his attorney Jacek Dubois' statement. "Interrupting defence attorney's statement is synonymous with refusing right to defend. I've just learned that not only was attorney Jacek Dubois interrupted, but also not allowed to continue" - he said.

On late evening on Thursday, the Disciplinary Chamber finally issued the verdict and said judge Tuleya should not be detained, nor forcibly brought to the prosecutor's office.

Judge Igor Tuleya is consistently refusing to report to the prosecutor. He also openly states he does not recognise the Supreme Court Disciplinary Chamber as a court, nor considers its decisions as binding.

In November 2020, the Disciplinary Chamber lifted the judge's immunity on the prosecutor's office request. He was suspected to have leaked information from an inquiry and witness' identity and testimony, which could jeopardise the case.

The said inquiry related to the event of December 16, 2016, when Sejm session had been moved to the Column Hall. During that session, opposition lawmakers blocked the pulpit in protest against restrictions imposed on journalists working in the Sejm and the exclusion of Civic Platform MP Michał Szczerba from the session. The then Speaker of the Sejm Marek Kuchciński (PiS) resumed the session in the Column Hall, where important voting then took place, including draft budget for 2017.

Judge Igor TuleyaWojciech Olkuśnik/PAP

The inquiry was twice discontinued by the prosecutor's office. In 2017, Warsaw District Court led by judge Tuleya revoked the prosecutor's office first discontinuation decision, and allowed the media to record the oral justification of the court's ruling.

Article 95b of the criminal proceedings act states the president of the court or the court itself have the right to open the proceedings to the public.

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Źródło: TVN24 News in English, TVN24

Źródło zdjęcia głównego: TVN24