From Iceland — State Prosecutor Demands Answers From Interior Minister

State Prosecutor Demands Answers From Interior Minister

Published January 12, 2014

The State Prosecutor has asked the Ministry of the Interior to account for a leaked memo that falsely impugned a deported asylum seeker last month.
The weekly newspaper Reykjavík vikublað reports (.pdf file) that State Prosecutor Sigríður J. Friðjónsdóttir has asked Interior Minister Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir for information on the leak. She also confirmed that she has yet to get an answer from the ministry.
In addition, Katrín Oddsdóttir – the lawyer for Evelyn Glory Joseph, who was also named in the leaked memo – has as well filed charges against the ministry with the State Prosecutor.
As reported, Stefán Karl Kristjánsson, the lawyer of Nigerian asylum seeker Tony Omos, has already filed seven charges against Hanna Birna and her ministry, all of which are related to breach of confidentiality, abuse of public office and slander.
The leaked memo was issued last November, with all evidence suggesting it came from the ministry. The document, which came into the hands of selected members of the press, contended that Nigerian asylum seeker Tony Omos – who was facing deportation and was in hiding from police at the time – was connected to a human trafficking case earlier this summer, and that he is not actually the father of his girlfriend Evelyn Glory Joseph’s expected child. The document contended furthermore that Evelyn was pressured by Tony to say he is the child’s father.
None of these accusations proved to be true – in fact, Stefán told reporters at the time, “My client was investigated, denied the charges against him, and within the documents it shows that the investigation was dropped.” Evelyn also insisted to reporters that Tony was indeed the father of her child, who is expected to be born this month, and offered to submit to a paternity test to prove it.
Since then, Hanna Birna has been evasive with reporters and lawyers alike, while implying in parliament that other parties – such as the police or the Red Cross – could have been responsible for the leak, even though all evidence points to her ministry.
The ministry has also decided to continue the practice of not responding to the press, as they have sent a statement to the press that they will not be answering any more questions about Tony Omos nor the charges against the minister and her ministry.
A response from the ministry to the Special Prosecutor is still pending.

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