North Macedonia Special Prosecutor Denies Misuse of Office

Special Prosecutor Katica Janeva told a brief press conference in Skopje on Tuesday that she was not involved in any way in the alleged extortion attempt which regular prosecutors started probing last week.

"I claim under full responsibility that I have not, consciously or unconsciously, by acting or not acting, misused the duty which I still perform," Janeva told journalists at the 15-minute press conference.

She added that she is "encouraging institutions to shed light on all the facts" regarding the ongoing investigation into alleged extortion.

The regular Prosecution Against Organised Crime seized Janeva's mobile phone last Monday as part of its investigation into the suspected extortionists, sparking a nationwide scandal.

Janeva's phone was taken as part of attempts to collect further evidence about two businessmen who are suspected of extorting money - Bojan Jovanovski, who is known by the nickname Boki 13, and Zoran Milevski, alias Zoki Kiceec.

They are suspected of promising a suspect in a Special Prosecution case that they would reduce his sentence or annul it, thanks to their alleged ties to an as-yet-unnamed prosecutor.

Janeva said that just like many other prominent public and political figures, she knew Jovanovski, who is a celebrity in North Macedonia.

But she said that this "does not mean that someone had the right to misuse my official office in order to gain possible privileges or take illegal actions".

"I am clean," Janeva said shortly before leaving the press conference without allowing journalists to ask questions.

She insisted that the cases she had worked on will prove in the future who wanted her discredited.

The news last Monday about prosecutors seizing Janeva's mobile phone came...

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