The circumstances surrounding the death of András Váradi are still unclear despite the prosecutor’s office concluding there was no criminal wrongdoing, according to the lawyer representing Váradi’s family, György Magyar. Magyar says the prosecution’s investigation into Várádi’s death failed to explain conflicting expert testimony and that the case was closed without police reconstructing the accident at the scene of the crime.
Váradi, a shepherd and candidate for mayor, was killed on October 11th, 2014, when he was hit by an automobile just one day before the municipal election.
Váradi made national headlines in 2014 by demonstrating against the loss of lands traditionally cultivated by him and others to a company owned by Felcsút mayor Lörinc Mészáros, a close friend of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and one of Hungary’s richest men thanks to a series of lucrative government contracts and concessions.
The day after Hungarian opposition party Together (Együtt) nominated Váradi as its candidate for mayor of Alcsútdoboz, his fields were plowed under in an apparent act of political retribution, allegedly by individuals employed by Mészáros’ company.
According to Magyar, technical experts claim Váradi had pulled his automobile to the side of the road to recover a ladder that had fallen off his car. Váradi then crossed the lane divider to retrieve the ladder and was supposedly walking back to his car in the opposing lane when an oncoming automobile struck him. Magyar says that if the technical experts are right, then Váradi would have sustained injuries to the front and left side of his body.
Medical experts concluded that Váradi had sustained the impact injuries on the right side of his body. The medical experts further concluded that he had been standing posted on his left leg and was in the process of stepping forward with his right leg when he was struck by the oncoming automobile. His body flew 26 meters.
Initial reports claimed that an 84-year-old Austrian-Hungarian dual citizen struck Váradi as he was carrying the ladder.
A witness, who had been in an automobile following behind Váradi’s car when the ladder fell off, claims Váradi stopped his car when the ladder fell. The witness also stopped and says Váradi pulled over and apologized for the ladder falling off his car.
The witness says Váradi said he would go retrieve the ladder. The witness remained in the car and turned on its emergency blinkers as Váradi went back to retrieve the ladder. The witness did not see Váradi being struck by the oncoming car.
Magyar says this fact is crucial because investigators could not determine that Váradi was actually carrying the ladder when he was struck by the automobile. The aluminum ladder was not damaged and the automobile that struck Váradi sustained no damage as a result of hitting the ladder.
Months later, when investigators realized the ladder could serve as evidence, they went to Váradi’s family to retrieve it, only to learn that the ladder was gone because a family member was using it. When the ladder was returned, the investigators were not interested in its value as evidence.
Magyar says he will request that the court carry out reconstruction of the scene of the accident to determine what really happened, uncover and correct any malfeasance on behalf of the investigators, and address the conflicting expert testimonies.
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