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Roma killings accused linked to security services

Budapest, 22.8.2010 11:16, (The Herald Scotland)

After half a decade of random murders of Hungarian Gypsies, four suspects have been arrested amid claims they may have had links with the country’s various secret intelligence services.

Now, with the Hungarian Defence Ministry having made a timid admission to the allegations, conspiracy theorists are having a field day.

Over the years, six Roma, including a five-year-old boy, have been gunned down by unknown assailants, striking terror into Hungary’s half a million Gypsies.

Last week, after what some are calling an unconscionable delay, police closed their investigations into the serial Gypsy killings and transferred the cases of the four suspects to the Pest County Superior Court.

At a press conference, a police spokesman named the alleged assassins as Istvan Cs, Istvan K, Arpad Sandor K, and Zsolt P, as under Hungarian law suspects cannot be named while in preliminary detention.

The four are charged with murdering six strangers in nine predominantly Gypsy villages, and injuring another five. In the raids they allegedly fired 78 shots and threw four firebombs, endangering the lives of 55 others. They are facing charges of premeditated murder, arms control violations and stealing weapons. They all pleaded not guilty.

Given the prevalent antagonism towards the “thieving, workshy Roma”, as they are labelled by the far right, it is widely assumed that the alleged murderers are neo-fascist activists. But in a startling twist to the emotive race-hate issue, further exacerbated by lynchings of Hungarians by Gypsy mobs, the possible involvement of state security organs for political ends has been unearthed.

The Hungarian Defence Ministry admitted last week that the murder suspect Istvan Cs. had served in the Military Intelligence Office’s counter-intelligence section, but had left the service before the Gypsy murders. According to investigation sources, he was the driver at two separate Gypsy murders.

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