A month after Matjaz Rogelj's arrival the criminal investigators are still without results
Office of the prosecutor empty handed
The investigation has been impeded by the confusion caused by Alkalaj and Skaggs
Dnevnik, by Domen Caharijas
May 8, 2001
LJUBLJANA, May 8 - Matjaz Rogelj, who had proclaimed himself the world computer champion and had received 13.5 million tolars for preparations for the competition, had already been apprehended by the investigators on March 12 upon his arrival at the airport; the investigators have conducted (an unsuccessful) conversation with Rogelj on the same day. A week later Rogelj again appeared for questioning, this time accompanied by his lawyer Dr. Peter Ceferin, and again left the investigators empty handed - he gave no statement. Yesterday the investigators have still not managed to gather enough evidence which would enable them to compose a criminal indictment against the alleged world computer champion. As stated by the press representative of the Ljubljana police Robert Staba, the investigators are still gathering data and information, though Staba believes that they will soon complete their work - that is, they will write a criminal indictment, or, forward to the office of the prosecutor only a report, if there is not enough evidence to support the suspicion of a criminal act. But it is also true that the investigators have so far been convinced several times that the investigation is near completion. The criminal investigation was also supposedly impeded by the confusion that the world hoaxer Joey Skaggs and the controversial Miso Alkalaj caused by involving themselves in the case. Skaggs had admitted the alleged hoax as "his child," while Miso Alkalaj helped him with information, which enabled Skaggs to appear very competent in front of Slovene media. When it turned out that money was involved, they both retreated (from the case), Alkalaj had even considered a lawsuit against the media that supposedly "dunked him into the whole story." Despite that, the investigators have invited him for an informative talk, where he denied any involvement and told them that he had learned about Matjaz Rogelj from the media. In the case of Matjaz Rogelj a suspicion of a fraud at the expense of the Ministry of Education and Sports is indicated, which would be a criminal act in accordance with the second paragraph of article 217 of the Slovene penal code, since the sum involved exceeded 55.000 (German) Marks. For such criminal acts the maximum penalty is a prison sentence of eight years. Even if Matjaz Rogelj were to refund the sum, the suspicion of the same criminal act would remain. Of course, the court will have to prove that Rogelj had intended to defraud from the very beginning. If a case of fraud is proved against Rogelj, he will also have to face sanctions at the Law faculty which had no contact with him since his return since he had not applied for exams.