The appeal in the case of former Hungarian ambassador to Peru, Gábor Kaleta, who was convicted of child pornography charges and sentenced to suspended prison time and fined HUF 540,000 (EUR 1,535), was withdrawn by his lawyer, so the sentence imposed at first instance has become final, the proceedings do not continue at second instance.
Before his embassy position, Kaleta also served as spokesman for the Ministry of Justice and Foreign Affairs, and was brought to Hungary in complete secrecy last spring after more than 19,000 under-18 pornography photos had been found on his electronic devices during a huge international operation. In early July, he pleaded guilty to the child pornography charges at his preliminary hearing. He was then handed a one-year suspended prison sentence and a fine of HUF 540,000 (EUR 1,527). Back then, he lodged an appeal against the decision. However, 24.hu reported that the appeal was withdrawn by Kaleta’s lawyer, so the sentence imposed at first instance became final, the proceedings do not continue at second instance, according to the information.
The case has resulted in a legal debate as well, many have been outraged about the verdict, calling it astonishingly lenient and asked for the strengthening of the penal code, while the government also announced the possibility of making the names of the offenders public. While the court argued that the prosecution’s demand basically “narrowed its means of action,” the prosecution office later argued that the court could have gone for a stricter sentence. At the hearing, in his justification, the judge also emphasized that the current regulation only allows for imprisonment from three months up to three years.
The parliamentary report of the case has been sealed for ten years.
featured photo: Szilárd Koszticsák/MTI