This writing will probably differ from the accustomed publications of the days past in many respects. I have to begin with saying that it was not that I came late for the timeliness of this piece of news when I was ready with my own writing after the Attorney General’s resignation, with a several day delay. According to my wont if I set to a writing then I usually stand up from my table only having the ready article, even risking the lateness for family programs. My meditation on Kálmán Györgyi did not render it possible this time. Thoughts, the personal memories were whirling in me. The frustration the judgement of the General Attorney produced in me was unusual for me.
When I thought about the Attorney General’s person, I saw a person being conscious of his appreciation of his path of life, professional successes, giving the impression of confidence, calm and mainly fairness. I can remember I took note of him first in 1991 as a member of the Parliament when he tolerated it extremely soberly that he had to answer unprepared, often silly but at least unmerited remarks. His calm, businesslike behavior put up a curved mirror for many of those who managed to get in the Honored House only thanks to the current of the change of regime and who could be there not as direct consequence of the acknowledgement of their paths of life. It was my commitment to human honesty what insisted on me, intervening as a representative, telling my fellow-representatives all that the affected Attorney General responsible to the Parliament could not express. In the following years I listened to his words always learning, I heeded his public actions with respect, which actions were never intrusive, even it was rather his moderation what was conspicuous. I still remember this calmness, human nature of his personal appearance, his easily intelligible sentences and they still command respect in me.
Then why is this duality in me? Why is it still nearer by me that in spite of my personal disappointments, in the days past I kept fingers crossed for him to stay in his office? I kept fingers crossed for it although I could have not answered the “why”. ……… Not, because I had had to be disappointed in the notion of him formed in me so many times.
I and only I surely know that the actions of the state administration against me were unmerited and unjust. I am the only one who can be sure in their unjust being, though, because of my open public actions, I trusted that the people respected by me, the scholars of their professions understood or at least felt the same moral creed.I trusted that at the unmerited attack of the Tax Office I would be secured by the personal confidence with the that-time police leaders and the Attorney General which became mutual through many years. Their personal experiences will make them skeptical and they will put a stop to the unhindrance of the tax authority. It was paradoxical that I even rejoiced at it that, as a state reprisal because of my rejection of the difference of opinion considered as tax debate in the beginning, the APEH made also criminal charge against me. Because this way I partly got out of the direct powers of the APEH, and two new bodies, the police and the state attorney’s office could start inquiring. That time I extremely trusted in the independence, impartiality and preparedness of these two bodies. I told it to my friends with confidence that now the APEH was wide off the mark because its whole procedure would become untrustworthy within a few weeks when the police and the state attorney’s office, declaring my lawful behavior, would conclude the proceedings against me. I based one of the strongest supports for my optimism on my confidence in Kálmán Györgyi’s person. My later disappointment was commensurable only with the bigness of my confidence. Though I have to mention also the politeness of the people participating in the proceedings all the while, but they could have hardly been more unprepared professionally. And it was true not only for the knowledge of their own criminal proceedings but mainly for understanding the contents of the respective legal expectations. The investigator officer asserted it all the time that he was not able to judge the tax-issue, the judge would decide about it. In spite of my objection, the base of the incrimination, then the formal accusation was such a “tax expert’s” report, which the requested expert made only on the basis of the denunciation material of the APEH, since my hearing (the incrimination) came following this report, perhaps on its basis. The police, then the state attorney’s office left my request, then my complaint out of consideration. In those I asked them to order for a new expert examination in the respect and with the full knowledge of what I presented, respectively to entrust a so-called judicial tax expert on the basis of the laws instead of the expert unknown by me in his person, partiality. I would have liked to prove it by the biased partiality of the materials of the tax authority that far from being founded on fault the APEH denunciation was definitely malicious, partial and contained numerous unlawful procedural elements. To establish these assertions of mine I also made criminal charges requesting the evidence of the illegalities. These attempts of mine remained unsuccessful. The police and, following my complaints, the state attorney’s office had never got to the stage of investigation in the case of these denunciations. They refused to start an investigation often in a humiliating way and in spite of the evident and perceptible illegalities. They explained it by saying that the investigation could not be expected to come to success. Later, when in a few cases I got to the judicial stage with my own obstinacy as private prosecution, it was the trial judge who declared it. Then he directed the state attorney’s office to hold a real investigation concerning my denunciation because the court noticed a crime liable to prosecution by popular action. The answer of the police and the state attorney’s office came about even after it. They refused to investigate again, because they considered the arbitrary ranging of the act not traced yet as obsolete. Finally it was the Parliamentary Commissioner of Citizenship Rights who partly restored my legal injury in the respect of the complaints about the proceedings of the tax authority and the illegalities refused by the police. In the comprehensive tax audit proceedings of one taxpayer he declared the single or repeated constitutional injury in more than five diverse fields. Though the Parliamentary Commissioner’s statement exonerated me, but it could not substitute for the obligation of a police investigation. Therefore it could not declare it that the perpetrators of the illegality committed their act intentionally and this way their act was a crime at the same time. And if there is not an investigation then there is neither a formal accusation and this way any felony can remain secreted “forever”!
It was the moment when I asked to meet Kálmán Györgyi in person through official channels. According to my expectation the Attorney General granted an interview to me in an anticipatory way. It strengthened my confidence in his person again. The responsible public prosecutor proceeding in my case was present at the meeting too. The atmosphere of the conversation was extremely calm and polite this time too. It did not resemble my notion of such an occasion when a fraud with the chance of a 5-8 year imprisonment asked to meet the state attorney. I asked only one thing from Kálmán Györgyi in this conversation. I wanted the same judgement for the denunciation of the Tax Office, the examination of its contents and my contrary opinion. What I asked did not mean anything else but having the laws obliging the police and the state attorney’s office in the course of their proceedings be observed fully and impartially instead of the conspicuous “loyalty” to the state organs. I also asked him to cross the continuation of an evidently unlawful practice. That privacy, trade and tax secrets about all the particulars of the proceedings of the police, then the state attorney’s office, which were protected by the law and could not be lifted in a criminal procedure, became public continually. Not to mention the at least uncertain being of their professional level. This matter evidently concerned the present public prosecutor too, but it still did not prevent him from giving a personal interview to journalists in the following days and giving information even about the transactions, showing his lack of preparedness which was even perceptible for specialists.
I closed the conversation with an unusual personal suit. I admitted that though I am convinced of having the right on my side both professionally and morally, but I also know, feel that it is almost impossible for a man to undertake a permanent opposition to an organization (the APEH in this case) provided with the full arsenal of power means of the state and “bravely” leaving all legal and moral limits out of consideration. But I still undertake and carry through with it. But opening two new “fronts” would be unbearable for me too. In this case it would be the public presentation of the serial injuries of the police proceedings and the attitude of the state attorney’s office, and taking legal actions against the affected ones. Though the possibility of legal remedy is given in these cases too, but I would probably not be able to practice my rights. This is why I requested the personal meeting expressing my respect for Kálmán Györgyi and my conviction of his honesty. Later I experienced what I said then. After the judicial verdict of acquittal in my criminal procedure it took several years to me to restrain myself and summarize my experiences of the proceedings of the police and the state attorney’s office and to initiate proceedings at the Parliamentary Office of Citizenship Rights a few months ago. The proceedings were instituted since then but we would have to wait a while for its statements!
Leaving the meeting I felt that Kálmán Györgyi listened to me respectfully but I did not feel the “internal” decision of him, I did not feel that I had convinced him. And not even that he would try to reveal it by an internal inquiry whether the proceedings of the state attorney’s office led by him could cause somebody’s unmerited calumny. I do not think that, taking it easily, he thought that so many mistakes would pass somehow and I was at the wrong place in the wrong time. I rather felt that he had and probably still had a misinterpreted loyalty remained to the state attorney’s office, where the infallibility of the state attorney’s office as unity should be ensured.
It was justified also later when the trial court – as fast as unbelievable even for me – acquitted me of the charges. They did not institute investigation about the unacceptable being of the professional level of the proceedings of the police/state attorney’s office charging but let that “eccentric” public prosecutor be made impossible by the organ directed by him, who preferred his commitment to human rights to the presumed reputation of the state attorney’s office on the basis of what experienced in the court room.
The public prosecutor, who acted in the courtroom according to the principles of the constitutional state, was made impossible in his profession and living. The procedure of the police/state attorney’s office had a great contribution to it that I had to significantly limit my public part because of unmerited actions of power. A few years ago one of my closest friends, an old and ill man, was kept in pretrial imprisonment for almost half a year. There he lost more than 10 kilos of his weight within a short time. Then, according to my conviction, his physique brought low in this unmerited situation lost its resistance to his disease being in him for ten years but medically stabilized. He died after a few months. Fortunately he could live to see the conclusion of the procedure against him because of its unfounded being. I, as president of the Entrepreneurs’ National Alliance, could achieve my aim neither in his case, which was making them at least keep the procedure within the expectable human and legal bounds. I had expressed my obtuseness in László Juszt’s case in many of my earlier writings. Where everybody having an average legal knowledge could shudder at the defying of law by the police units specialized for the most important cases and this way probably directed by the most prepared leaders, then at Kálmán Györgyi’s “enlightenment” on his return from holiday. In László Juszt’s case it was a leading journalist, public figure losing – though perhaps only temporarily – his permanent chance to appear on television, and it was the magazine invented by him that had closed down under compulsion. It certainly makes me think that the weekly paper 168 óra publishes it week by week that the police, the state attorney’s office – I would not make bold even to think of the Tax Office – could not find it out in 560 days who that Kaya Ibrahim was! Whether was there a crime where the only possibility was crime? Where the perpetrator is known, the way of commission is known, the quantum of damages is known and the aggrieved party is known. Though it is true enough that the competent ones should charge to examine the crime!
My selected examples only illustrate, they are only to show that the organs of powers following the change of regime are not working without disturbances yet. They make mistakes and these mistakes are often spectacular, they still ruin human lots, paths of life, while sometimes they make an incomprehensibly wide way for the political, economic and often also the general crime.
I cannot answer my question drafted in the first sentences even reading my writing again. I still feel that it would be better if the Attorney General would be called Kálmán Györgyi in the future too. I cannot answer the why. My disappointments would give enough reason each to wish his retirement. I might be too optimistic and trust my first impression of people. I might want to believe that there is some explanation for all those I founded my doubts on. Perhaps it was his last step, his firmness in connection with the media boards of trustees, expressing his conviction what gave another argument in favor of his person. I might feel that the change of regime in the last ten years would have involved much more political sacrifice without Kálmán Györgyi. It makes me think of my father who has reminded me of it many times that when judging a certain age, a certain person I should examine it through the glasses of that age to get to know the right judgement. I might fear for the future. I am afraid that this position became so risky that it was impossible for somebody having similar preparedness, strength to undertake it, while the “aspirants” not having these abilities would be unacceptable for many of us.
A sentence at the end. I disagree with it that the reason of his resignation can be a personal matter. I would like to believe that he would reconsider his standpoint and publish it before long. If the reason is a matter of private life or state of health then that is really all being the business of the public, but this much certainly is. If it is political or official then we have the right to get to know the details and making us acquainted with it is an obligation even if the law does not definitely describe it for him.
March 9, 2000 János Palotás