Ján Kuciak was named as the recipient of the Legatum Institute’s Courage in Journalism Award. Kuciak was murdered in 2018, aged 27, following his investigative reporting of corruption in Slovakia, which revealed links between politicians and organised crime.
Kuciak was an investigative journalist for the Slovakian news website Aktuality.sk. His investigations included looking at allegations of tax fraud associated with individuals close to the then-ruling Smur Party, and links with Italian organised crime networks. On the 25th of February 2018, he was found shot dead in his home alongside his fiancée Martina Kušnírová. After his death, prosecutors stated they believed Kuciak was killed to stop his investigation.
One of the reasons Kuciak was chosen to receive the Courage in Journalism Award was due of the impact his death has had on Slovakia. For more information on his life, death and legacy his biography is available here. Biographies of our long list of nominees can be found here.
The Courage in Journalism Award was created to honour the legacy of Daphne Caruana Galizia. The award highlights the dangers faced by journalists around the world, and to promote press freedom. The Award is presented posthumously to a journalist whose death in the past year was a direct result of their work.
Accepting the award, Martin Turček, an investigative reporter and former colleague of Ján Kuciak said:
“In the past, powerful people did not face charges in Slovakia, but Ján’s precise work… was one of the reasons for tipping these scales… After Ján was murdered, the whole of Slovak society stood up against the corruption that Ján was writing about.”
To access the full event recording, which includes keynote remarks from Christina Lamb and Lord Freud, please see below.
To access our podcast conversation with Abeer Saady and Kate Clark, please find below.
To access the podcast of Christina Lamb’s keynote remarks, please find below.
Photos from the event can be found on our Flickr account.