Tuesday 24 April 2018

Accidental smuggler is in shock, says wife


THE wife of the Slovak caught up in the recent bomb scare has said he is "very traumatised" but won't sue because it was a genuine mistake.

Speaking yesterday, Monika Gondova said her husband is still in shock following Tuesday's events.

Stefan Gonda (49) was arrested at his apartment on Dorset Street in Dublin after the gardai were told Slovakian authorities had placed explosives in his bag as he passed through an airport there -- and failed to remove them. He was arrested for questioning and then released without charge.

"I have been told what he went through and what happened there and he is trying to escape from what went on," Ms Gondova said from their home in Slovakia. "He is still very traumatised by it all."

However, she does not want the policeman whose mistake allowed the explosive RDX on the plane -- and who then failed to inform his senior officers about the blunder for two days -- to be disciplined.

"I feel very sorry for the policeman involved," she said. "I don't want him to suffer unnecessarily. We all make mistakes and I am sure that he had no bad intentions when he did this.

"What happened has happened and we're sorry it did but people make mistakes. None of us are machines and (the Slovak authorities) have apologised to us. I'm sure there were good intentions in what they were doing."

Ms Gondova said she and her husband had rejected legal advice urging them to sue over the incident.

The Slovakian ambassador to Ireland, Roman Buzek, said Mr Gonda would be entitled to sue the police officer who failed to remove the explosives they planted in his bags without his knowledge before the flight from Poprad in the north of the country on Saturday.

Mr Gonda, who was not at his Dublin apartment yesterday, is an electrician who has lived and worked here for almost four years and goes back to Slovakia for the summer and Christmas holidays.

Irish Independent

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