Friends of Orban

Convicted child molester gave a music lesson in children’s summer camp funded by the Prime Minister’s Office

Earlier this year, the presidential pardon of a man convicted in a high-profile child molestation case led to the resignation of president Katalin Novák. One of the convicted men, Béla Kunstár, appears to have worked in children’s summer camp in 2022, which was funded by the Prime Minister’s Office. Béla Kunstár was previously involved in several companies connected to political elites.

In April, we wrote about the second accused in the Bicske child molestation case, Béla Kunstár, who was convicted of sexual abuse of four underage boys. Kunstár was sentenced in 2019, getting an exceptionally light punishment, avoiding prison time. The former educator got off with only one and a half years in prison, suspended for three years.

The heart of Fidesz

As Átlátszó previously reported, the convicted abusers and their acomplice all had extensive contacts with political and business figures linked to the government parties in Fejér county, often called the heart of Viktor Orbán’s party.

A total of three men were convincted between 2019 and 2021 for the abuse of several children in the Bicske foster home. The director, János Vásárhelyi is currently serving a prison sentence for child sexual abuse, while the home’s vice-director, Endre Kónya was sentenced for covering up the crimes of others. He later recieved national attentions for having been pardoned by President Katalin Novák.

Our investigation into the Bicske focused on the third man Béla Kunstár. As reported, before his arrest, he was heavily involved with local business and political figures. Around the time the case was over, he reappeared in a new company that quickly gained hundreds of millions of HUFs of profits through mostly unknown activities. Kunstár himself was able to get a luxury car around the same time.

Well-funded, well-connected

In the period since then, new information has emerged about Kunstár’s connections and activities after the Bicske trial. The man’s name has now surfaced in a 2022 tender document for a children’s summer camp. The report states that Mr. Kunstár was invited to host musical activities to children.

„On the fourth day, we had an instrument demonstration led by Béla Kunstár, who guided the children into the world of brass instruments”

– the report on ONKE’s website read.

The camp in question was organized by ONKE, a cultural association of German-Hungarians. The group recieved 500 thousand HUFs from the Prime Ministers Office, one of the top organs of Orbán’s government, to organize the camp. The association also receivs funding from several other state sources, such as the Bethlen Gábor Fund Management Ltd. (BGA Zrt.). Kunstár was also involved in another one of ONKE’s summer camps in 2021.

It is likely that the man mentioned in the reports is the same man that was convicted of child abuse in 2019. The former foster home worker plays the trombone in a band named Lohr Kapelle, which is led by Miklós Loór – the same man who wrote the report on ONKE’s site. Loór, along with ONKE’s president Mónika Rierpl, is a well-known figure in the German-Hungarian minority governance.


Béla Kunstár, convicted child molester in 2022.

They serve as minority representatives in Budapest, and in this year’s election, they are running for representative seats in the town of Szigetszentmárton.

Linked to Orbán’s second-in-command

They also lead several organizations that recieve government funding. These include ÉNMÖSZ, an organization for the ethnic German community of Northern Hungary. ÉNMÖSZ’s annual gala regularly attracts government members.

Deputy Prime Minister of Hungary, Zsolt Semjén was the official patron of the gala at least twice in recent years.

A newspaper article from 2015 also mentions Semjén along with Béla Kunstár: according to the report, Kunstár played the trombone in a memorial event hosted by Semjén.

As part of his sentence, Kunstár was banned from working jobs where he has to work with children – a standard sanction against child abusers.  In 2021 and 2022, he was still under probation, which means that if he really worked in the summer camp, he could have committed a crime that would result in prison time.

Failed coverups

The pardon case and the strikingly lenient sentence against Béla Kunstár raise serious questions about the Hungarian justice system, given that all three men convicted in the Bicske scandal have strong links to circles of power.

The attorney of Endre Kónya, Attila Bálint, is the current deputy mayor of Etyek, supported by the ruling Fidesz party. He is also the managing director of a state-owned company, KTI Hungarian Transport Research and Logistics Institute Nonprofit Inc.

Convicted Bicske director János Vásárhelyi’s attorney was István Szmulai, who is known as Viktor Orbán’s family lawyer: he is the legal representative of the Orbán family’s company, Fuvaroznak Zrt., and a member of the supervisory board in NAKK Zrt., the company of Áron Orbán, the Prime Minister’s brother.

Connections do not stop here. Zoltán Tessely, the local Fidesz representative was formerly the mayor of Bicske. His election campaign at the time was supported by János Vásárhelyi, who served as a town council member.

Ironically, Zoltán Tessely is replacing former justice minister Judit Varga in the Parliament’s „EU committe”. Judit Varga was forced to resign after it was revealed that she approved the plea request of Endre Kónya.

Previously, many articles that mention the political connections of the Bicske sentenced were deleted from government websites. Among other things, hese articles included mentions of sports cooperation between Várárhelyi, Kónya and sports clubs ran by the Orbán family.

After confronting ONKE about Béla Kunstár’s presents at their camp, we did not receive any reply. However, soon after emailing them, someone deleted one of Kulcsár’s mentions from the report. This does not erease the evidence, as the original version of the report can still be found on the Wayback Machine.

Written and translated by Zalán Zubor, the Hungarian version of this story is here.