The greatest chaos in the history of the judiciary of the Third Republic of Poland

Minister of Justice Adam Bodnar has caused the greatest chaos in the Polish judiciary since 1989. All the arrests, operational reviews and indictments made by prosecutors delegated to the job by Dariusz Barski as well as his own actions are failing. Defenders and attorneys for the counterparties in their cases will certainly have new opportunities.

This is exemplified by the case of the Szczecin prosecutor Barbara Zapaśnik, which was dismissed by the District Court in Szczecin due to the absence of a complaint by a duly authorized accuser under Article 17(1)(9) of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

May the dismissal of the case be testimony of how one can fall in one’s own political trap, since the Court dismissal may be challenged by the Public Prosecutor’s Office, which, according to a statement by the Ministry of Justice, is headed by a person appointed by prosecutor Jacek Bilewicz.

If a prosecutor decides to challenge the dismissal, then he will undermine the arguments of prosecutors Jacek Bilewicz and Adam Bodnar. If he agrees with the ruling of the District Court in Szczecin and does not appeal it, it will mean that he will consider as correct the final conclusion of the criminal case against the defendants, without a trial for the deeds specified in the indictment, which consisted in acting to the detriment of a company selling hot doughnuts.

But it does not end there.

If, in the light of the Court’s ruling, prosecutor Dariusz Barski was not permitted to return to public duty from retirement, then by the same token, he could not appoint Jacek Bilewicz as prosecutor of the National Prosecutor’s Office.

This means that all personnel decisions appointing the new leadership are null and void. That means in turn that, in the light of the Court’s decision, Poland has neither a National Prosecutor nor an ‘acting National Prosecutor’ now.

An announcement of the Ministry of Justice stated that only the reinstatements of the National Prosecutor Dariusz Barski and the prosecutor Barbara Zapaśnik to public duty were unlawful. However, it did not address the question whether the remaining decisions of Dariusz Barski will be recognised by the courts in other proceedings.