ZAGREB, February 19, 2020 – Justice Minister Dražen Bošnjaković said on Wednesday that he expected Chief State Prosecutor Dražen Jelenić to resign over his membership in a Masonic lodge, which he described as unacceptable.
“Membership in any civic association of this kind is unacceptable, regardless of the fact that it was registered in line with the law. Its activities are shrouded in mystery, as is its membership, so there are certain risks for the chief state prosecutor and others who are members of such organisations,” Bošnjaković said after a session of the inner cabinet.
He confirmed to reporters having talked with Jelenić, saying that he expected him to resign.
“Whether he will do so is up to him. If he does not, the government will launch a procedure to relieve him of duty,” Bošnjaković said, adding that the government wanted to close the matter swiftly.
He said that the government had not been aware of Jelenić’s membership in a Masonic lodge when it appointed him.
“Had we known it, we would have made entirely different decisions. It is unacceptable to us, but I’m not saying that his decisions were influenced by his membership.”
After the Nacional weekly published an article on the matter, Jelenić admitted to having joined the Masonic lodge of the Grand Orient of Croatia in 2018, but said that he did not believe his membership harmed the reputation of the Office of the Chief State Prosecutor because he had performed his duty entirely in line with the law.
He said that he was not considering resigning as Chief State Prosecutor as the Masonic lodge of which he was a member was a legally established association which advocated well-being in society.
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