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12 years in prison for Saso Mijalkov, 4 for Gordana Jankuloska

Former UBK security service director Saso Mijalkov was sentenced to 12 years in prison for the 2015 wiretapping scandal, and former Inteiror Minister Gordana Jankuloska was given four years in prison.

Mijalkov received a near maximum sentence after his escape attempt this weekend, during which he reportedly got all the way to Belgrade but was pressured to return to Macedonia. The case is over the mass abuse of the UBK surveillance system done under Mijalkov’s watch, but allegedly by rogue agents that collaborated with the SDSM party.

Two other UBK officials, Goran Grujevski and Nikola Boskoski, were given 15 years each. The two escaped to Greece, which refused to extradite them to Macedonia.

Mijalkov former chief of staff Toni Jakimovski was sentenced to 6 years in prison, Interior Ministry official Nadica Nikolic to 3 and several other officials were given suspended sentences.

Jankuloska is currently serving out a three year sentence for the purchase of an armored Mercedes – the same case over which former Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski received political asylum in Hungary. Mijalkov is in house arrest – even after his escape – but will likely face detention now after the sentencing, pending his appeal. Since his fall from power, Mijalkov developed an extensive relationship with the Zaev regime and helped it impose the name change on Macedonia, as well as working to weaken the opposition VMRO-DPMNE party by trying to create factions within it. This is why it is believed that his escape was arranged with Zaev, but had to be cut short under international pressure.

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