On October 14th 2019, the Military Provincial Court in Warsaw issued a European Arrest warrant against Stefan Michnik, a former judge of the Military District Court in Warsaw in communist Poland. The warrant was issued at the request of the public prosecutor of the Branch Commission for the Prosecution of Crimes Against the Polish Nation. Stefan Michnik is a prime suspect in the investigation of 93 crimes he perpetrated during his judicial service between 1953 and 1954. The seriousness of his offences allows to classify them as communist crimes against humanity. These include issuing unlawful sentences of capital punishment, long-term imprisonments and granting unlawful provisions on the application of detention for Polish citizens working for the sovereignty and independence of the Polish State.
On the 13th September 2019, the Military Garrison Court of Justice in Warsaw issued the decision to apply a preventive measure of a provisional three-month detention period from the moment of the suspect’s arrest.
Stefan Michnik, who still holds Polish citizenship, does not have permanent residence in Poland. After de-Stalinization period he went into exile in 1969 and has lived in the Kingdom of Sweden ever since. He does not accept correspondence addressed and sent to him and is notorious for avoiding and obstructing any contact with the representatives of both the Polish judiciary system as well as the relevant Polish diplomatic mission. He does not have any intention to co-operate with this investigation under the pretence of living abroad.
Therefore, the European Arrest Warrant for Stefan Michnik will be handed over to the authorities of the Kingdom of Sweden and may result in his extradition to Poland.
Source: Institute of National Remembrance/NB
Translation: Jolanta Pitera