Prosecution wants to bring Supreme Audit Office head to justice
Poland's prosecutor general has motioned the Sejm (lower house) speaker to strip the Supreme Audit Office head of immunity, PAP has been told by the National Prosecution.
"Prosecutors plan to bring against Marian Banaś a dozen or so charges, including one concerning suspected irregularities in his property and tax declarations," reads a statement sent to PAP on Friday.
The motion to bring Banaś to justice was prepared by the Regional Prosecution in Białystok, north-eastern Poland.
According to the prosecution, Banaś, who held the posts of the head of the Customs Service, the head of the National Fiscal Administration, the finance minister and the head of Poland's Supreme Audit Office (NIK) in the period from November 2015 till August 2019, presented untrue information regarding the value of his property in all the ten property and tax declarations inspected by the Central Anti-Corruption Bureau (CBA).
Banaś faces up to a five-year prison term for giving an untrue statement in his property and tax declarations.
Earlier in the day, Jakub B., the son of Marian Banaś and his social advisor, was detained by the Central Anti-Corruption Bureau together with the director of the Regional Tax Authority in Kraków, southern Poland.
They were taken to the Regional Prosecution in Białystok, which announced later in the day that it would bring seven charges against Jakub B., including two charges of fraud connected with the embezzlement of means from the National Fund for the Restoration of Historic Monuments in Kraków in 2016.
Immediately after his son's detention, Banaś wrote on Twitter that Jakub B. had been detained at the Kraków Balice airport by CBA agents.
In May, Banaś sharply criticised steps taken by CBA against his son and said that they were politically motivated and connected with an audit of plans to hold presidential elections via a postal vote in 2020.
Banaś made the statement after CBA agents had conducted searches in selected places in connection with an investigation concerning suspected irregularities in his property and tax declarations.
"CBA officers conducted a search in the house of my son Jakub Banaś... My son, as well as I, along with the whole family, is constantly under surveillance and repressed," Banaś added.
"This is being done to force me to resign as the president of the Supreme Audit Office and change the results of already completed and conducted audits," he said.
In late May, the Supreme Audit Office notified the prosecutor’s office of possible crimes committed by the prime minister, his chief of staff and two ministers involved in the organisation of a failed postal presidential election in May last year.
Banaś added that the Supreme Audit Office had filed a notification of possible crimes committed by Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, Michał Dworczyk, the head of the Prime Minister's Office, State Assets Minister Jacek Sasin, and Interior Minister Mariusz Kamiński.
The government made an unsuccessful attempt to organise a presidential election in a postal format last May, defying the opposition's warnings that the procedure had no legal foundations. Ultimately, the plan collapsed after one of the parties in the governing coalition declined to support it.
Despite its cancellation, the postal vote plan still cost taxpayers tens of millions of zlotys.
NIK has already notified prosecutors of possible crimes committed by the Polish Post and the Polish Security Printing Works, the two institutions that were involved in printing and distributing the ballot papers.