The Proceedings Against Public Officials database and the investigative story following the database are combination of classical researchers’ skills with a large amount of data, gathered in order to reveal the public some inaccessible information about one of the key anti-corruption topics.
The database we created contains data on 2.766 proceedings that the Anti-Corruption Agency of Serbia (ACAS) has led against public officials in Serbia and around 1.700 public officials throughout Serbia (including some from Kosovo – information that ACAS processed). Proceedings were launched against officials who did not register their property or income on time, did not provide accurate information about it, or they found themselves in conflict of interest.
Among officials we found members of parliament, ministers, ambassadors, mayors, directors of public companies and others financed by citizens’ money.
The investigation showed that ACAS launched proceedings against Prime Minister and eight ministers of the Government for suspicion of the violation of the Law on the Agency – and seven violated the law.
We found that misdemeanor charges most often become obsolete, and institutions ignore recommendations for dismissal of officials.
The database covers the period 2010 (when ACAS was established) to November 2018. It is a revamped version of our previous database – updated, expanded and much improved. The database is only available in Serbian language, so here is digest of what can be found. It is searchable by one or more of four parameters: Name, Surname, Public Function, State Body / Institution, Place. A searcher can narrow the search by excluding parameters pertaining to the different measures pronounced.
The search can be zeroed in only on public officials from Belgrade who have criminal proceedings launched against them.
Feature ‘Top 10’ displays graphs showing the highest number of procedings by several parameters: public officials with the biggest number of proceedings against them; no. proceedings by the type of public function/position; by the type of institution; by legal basis, and place.
Feature ’Measures’ displays graphs showing the number of different measures pronounced by year.
Feature ’Complaints’ displays graphs showing the number of criminal and misdemeanour complaints lodged by year; by type of function/position, by outcome.
‘Diagram of proceedings’ represents the vast amount of data visually and in a user friendly manner. Mouse hover over any link shows the number of cases in point. There are five diagrams: 1) the outcome of proceeding by the type of legal breach; 2) the outcome of proceedings (or no complaint lodged, i.e. no proceedings) by the type of public function; 3) the link between the type of legal breach, measures pronounced and the outcome of proceedings; 4) the link between the function, type of legal breach and the proceedings that ACAS launched; 5) the link between the year of launching the proceedings and the year of its completion.