It is amazing. A couple of days ago the Hungarian authorities were totally incapable of doing anything about the twelve-year-old Romanian boy. A boy can seriously wound somebody and then a few minutes later be back at his favorite stomping grounds. We learned that he left the institution in which they placed him 43 times. He is not a Hungarian citizen, we were told, and therefore nothing more could be done. The whole story seemed absurd.
Then interesting things began to happen. Suddenly everything seems possible. The boy is going back to Romania where he is going to be placed in the best facilities available there. (Let’s hope that Romanian facilities have improved since we first heard about their orphanages at the beginning of the 1990s.) We hear that they even identified him thanks to his fingerprints. Therefore it seems fairly certain that Krisztián (this is apparently not his real name) didn’t start his criminal activities in Hungary. One newspaper seems to know that Krisztián has seven brothers and sisters and that his parents live on assistance. We also learned that Krisztián acquired his knowledge of Hungarian in the last few months. When the Hungarian childcare providers first encountered him, he didn’t speak the language. But children learn fast. He has never been to school, but he is far from slow.
As a result of this case, we now hear that every year there are about 4,000 cases where the perpetrators are children under fourteen years old. The head of the institution from which Krisztián walked out 43 times assured us this morning on MTV1 that only three or four end in death. Aren’t we lucky! One of the newspapers reminded its readers of a case that occurred in 2000 in which two girls strangled a thirteen-year-old classmate. I am not suggesting that these youngsters should be placed in jail, but surely they should be put into some "boarding school" where serious attention could be given to their rehabilitation.
A caller to György Bolgár told an interesting story about this boy. Sometime last September this man’s eighteen-year-old son was accosted by Krisztián and his friends in the underpath at Lujza Blaha tér. The boys asked for cigarettes which the naive eighteen-year-old provided. But they also wanted to have a light. The high school student obliged, using a fairly nice lighter. The lighter was taken, his cell phone grabbed. He escaped without being stabbed and somehow even managed to get his cell phone back. He phoned the equivalent of 911 from the streetcar but the police were not interested in his plight. The next morning, the father insisted that they go to the police station where the detectives seemed to know a lot about our boy and set a date for a meeting between Krisztián and his victim. However, then came the difficult times around October 23 when the police were busy with other things. The father and son received a telephone call that the meeting with Krisztián must be postponed. They waited and waited. No more telephone calls. Eventually they received a letter from the police station in which the authorities informed the victim that unfortunately their investigation was unsuccessful and they couldn’t discover who the perpetrator was. An outright lie!
Are we surprised that Hungarians have lost their trust in the police? I’m not!