Sanctions – Ministry of Justice takes action against Chief Public Prosecutor Fuchs

That happened quickly on Tuesday: Only a few hours after the official return of Justice Minister Alma Zadic to the head of the department after her baby leave, explosive decisions were made. The Ministry of Justice has taken measures in the case of the head of the Vienna Public Prosecutor’s Office, Johann Fuchs.

A disciplinary report was filed with the responsible disciplinary court in Graz and it was suggested that a possible suspension be examined. In addition, Fuchs’ responsibilities are limited: He is “temporarily” no longer responsible for the supervision of the Economic and Corruption Public Prosecutor’s Office (WKStA), for classified information and all the causes relating to the Ibiza-U-Committee.

The measures were taken in view of the investigation by the Innsbruck Public Prosecutor against Fuchs on suspicion of violation of official secrecy. The presumption of innocence applies to Fuchs. The reason for this was Fuchs’ statements in the Ibiza-U-Committee to inform government members about house searches of ministers.

Minister Zadic spoke to Fuchs on the phone

Justice Minister Zadic (Greens) spoke to Fuchs on the phone today, Tuesday. The result of the conversation was that the division of responsibilities of the OStA Vienna will be changed, said ministry spokeswoman Christina Ratz when asked by the APA. The administration of justice as well as the technical and official supervision of the business and corruption public prosecutor’s office are assigned to the representatives of Fuchs in the distribution of responsibilities – as are all other classified information and all matters relating to the U-Committee.

In addition, Ratz pointed out that in disciplinary matters relating to public prosecutors (and judges) the Judges and Public Prosecutor’s Service Act should be applied. Accordingly, the ministry itself cannot order the suspension, but has to appeal to the competent disciplinary court – in this case in Graz. This was done with a disciplinary report in which the examination of a possible suspension was also suggested. (apa)

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