Ladislav Scurko sentences to eight years

Ladislav Scurko sentences to eight years

18 Jul 2012 | Davide Tuniz

Slovak player killed a hockey referee in 2008

Slovak hockey player Ladislav Ščurko, 26,  was sentenced to eight years in prison for the murder of hockey referee Marek Liptaj in January 2008 due to what was initially believed to be a monetary dispute, Ščurko stabbed Liptaj14 times and hid his body. His crime went undetected until December of that same year when the referees's remains were found in a Slovakian forest.
In April 2009 Ščurko confessed the murder of Liptaj and spent about two years in custody and was released in November 2011. He come back to play hockey playing part of the season in Slovak 3rd League with HK Slovan Gelnica and in 2nd League with HK Trebisov where he scored 15 goals (with 9 assists) in 10 games.
In the last weeks Ščurko said that the first confession was obtained with fraud by police and denied it. The investigation was resumed and the prosecutor asked a minimum of 15-years jail sentence. But the results of psychiatric examination revealed that at the time of the murder Ščurko was confused and not in possession of all faculties; it was accepted by the court as a mitigating circumstance and therefore imposed a sentence at the lower rate. The court also imposed a protective psychiatric outpatient treatment for the prisoner and imprisonment with moderate surveillance.
According to the initial reconstruction of Ščurko, he had killed Liptaj after the referee moved into his home under false pretenses. Liptaj, who he had been living with, originally told him that he was being treated for cancer, which presumably is why he was allowed to move in. Then, when Ščurko learned that Liptaj didn’t in fact have cancer, he and Liptaj got into an argument that ended with him stabbing the referee.
Ščurko started his career by playing in Spisská Nová Ves. He was drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers in the sixth round, 170th overall, in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft but never played in NHL. After three seasons in WHL - two with Seattle Thunderbirds and one at Tri-City Americans - he went back in Slovakia where he played for HC Kosice, winning the Extraliga in 2007-08, and Trebisov. He played in 5 World Championships with Slovakia, two U18 and two U20
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