Ex-head of Polish financial watchdog detained in corruption probe

The former head of Poland’s financial regulator, Marek Chrzanowski, has been detained and was being brought before prosecutors in an ongoing probe, a spokesman for the country’s Central Anti-Corruption Bureau said on Tuesday.

The spokesman, Temistokles Brodowski, said Chrzanowski was expected to face charges from prosecutors in the southern city of Katowice.

Brodowski also said that his Central Anti-Corruption Bureau (CBA) had earlier searched the Warsaw headquarters of the Financial Supervision Authority (KNF), of which Chrzanowski was head, as well as the suspect’s apartment.

In addition, witnesses have been questioned, and documents, electronic equipment and data carriers have been secured in the probe, Brodowski said, as quoted by public broadcaster Polish Radio’s IAR news agency.

Meanwhile, civil law expert Jacek Jastrzębski was last week appointed as the new head of Poland’s financial watchdog to replace Chrzanowski.

Chrzanowski tendered his resignation as head of the Financial Supervision Authority in mid-November amid claims that he attempted to solicit a bribe from a business tycoon earlier this year.

According to a report in the Gazeta Wyborcza daily, Leszek Czarnecki, one of Poland’s richest men, has alleged that Chrzanowski in March offered him favorable treatment in return for millions in financial gain.

Chrzanowski has denied corruption, saying the allegations were part of a scheme to discredit him.

The Polish financial system is safe and stable, the country’s finance minister declared last week.

Central bank chief Adam Glapiński has said that Poland’s banking system is “considered to be the safest in Europe” and that Polish banks are “in the best condition in Europe.”

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