Tusk, opposition criticise delay in Gdańsk mayor killer trial

Donald Tusk, the leader of the European People's Party in the European Parliament and a former Polish prime minister, has criticised delays in the trial of the man accused of murdering the mayor of Gdańsk, Paweł Adamowicz exactly two years ago. The ruling party argued that he used the anniversary of the mayor's death as a political tool.

The mayor was stabbed during a charity concert in Gdańsk on January 13, 2019, and died later from his wounds. His apparent attacker, Stefan W. (name withheld due to Polish privacy law), was arrested at the scene of the crime.

The attack prompted accusations from opposition politicians that the alleged incendiary language of some of the country’s leaders and pro-government media may have influenced the murderer.

Donald Tusk wrote on Twitter that although two years have passed since the incident, the murderer's trial has not yet been started. He added that neither have any steps been taken against the "political patrons" of a hate campaign against the late Gdansk mayor in the Polish public media, and recalled the words of Stefan W., who said that the assault "was a revenge against the judiciary and Civic Platform".

‘A political tool rather than homage’

In reply to the tweet by Donald Tusk, the deputy spokesman of the ruling party PiS Radosław Fogiel stated that “it takes a great deal of iniquity to weave a dispute over the judiciary into this tragedy”.

“It has nothing to do with paying tribute to the memory of the deceased one, but it is rather used as a political tool”, Mr Fogiel wrote.

'No judgement without 100% certainty'

The case of the murder of the president of Gdańsk, Paweł Adamowicz, is at a far advanced stage, but it cannot be closed until there is a one hundred percent certainty, said Michał Wójcik, the former justice minister, currently a minister at the Chancellery of the Prime Minister.

He recalled that the investigators had two opinions of expert psychiatrists, which were contradictory. Due to the discrepancy in opinions, the prosecutors requested an opinion from a third team of experts.

"If Stefan W. had been insane, it would mean that he did not commit a crime at all. If, on the other hand, he had suffered from diminished responsibility, it would mean that he committed the crime, but the degree of guilt is different", said Wójcik.