Old documents revive Poland's debate over Walesa's past

AP News
Posted: Feb 17, 2016 9:25 AM
Old documents revive Poland's debate over Walesa's past

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Allegations that former president Lech Walesa was a communist-era secret informer have resurfaced after prosecutors seized documents illegally held by a former official's family.

Nobel Peace laureate and Solidarity founder Walesa has repeatedly denied the allegations and was cleared by a special court in 2000.

Agnieszka Sopinska-Jaremczak, a spokeswoman for the state National Remembrance Institute, said Wednesday that its prosecutors seized documents from the house of the late Gen. Czeslaw Kiszczak, who was the last communist-era interior minister.

The papers came to light on Tuesday, when Kiszczak's widow offered to sell the institute documents concerning secret informer "Bolek," a codename mentioned in the allegations over Walesa. She demanded 90,000 zlotys ($23,000; 20,000 euros), Sopinska-Jaremczak said.

Prosecutors seized the documents the same day, because the law requires important historic papers to be handed in.

Head of the institute Lukasz Kaminski said that handwritten and typewritten documents and photographs were in the six packets seized from Kiszczak's house.

Institute prosecutors and other experts were going through them to check their authenticity and their contents. It was not immediately clear when they might announce their findings.