Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Good and Bad

Caboodle.hu - Budapest policemen caught taking bribe from gun-runners

"Budapest police officers were captured by special commando units after they accepted a Ft 700,000 bribe from a drug and firearms courier, who had been under police surveillance."

Ft 700,000 is just over $ 4000. Adjusting for differences in GDP per capita, this is like an American police officer taking a $9450 bribe.

"Warrant officer Sándor Sz. and sergeant major Csaba H, both patrol policemen in their thirties, stopped a car driver for a routine check on Fõ utca in Budapest’s First District Sunday afternoon.

By the way, this is the famous Castle District, the biggest tourist center in the city.

"The police officers found drugs and firearms in the car, but agreed to let the driver go after he offered them Ft 700,000. Within a minute the two police officers were handcuffed, as detectives from Vas county police and special commando units swooped on the courier, who was known to be carrying drugs, firearms, ammunition and forged Ft 20,000 banknotes.

Firearms are also illegal in Hungary unless you have a very exclusive, special permit for hunting.

"The driver was let go by the commando units, but was stopped on route 8, in the Jánosháza region, on Monday morning, when a search uncovered seven grams of cocaine, a pistol, 19 bullets and 53 counterfeit Ft 20,000 banknotes.

Ft 20,000 is worth about $120.

"Budapest's police chief fired Sz. and H. on Monday night."

Good things: The Hungarian police are concerned about corruption and are making arrests. They fired the offending officers.
Bad things: There IS corruption within the Hungarian police, and why, oh, why did the "commando unit" let the perp go in the first place?

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