NITRA (SITA) -- Acting at the proposal by the Nitra Regional Prosecutor, a judge of the Nitra District Court remanded four men from Nitra (49 years old J.S., 27 years old R.N., 36 years old V.B. and 32 years old M.D.) in custody. The quartet is accused of blackmailing, along with the alleged boss of Nitra underground Lubomir Ferus (36) whom the police detained on January 12 this year. In early 1996 the accused have extorted businessman Dusan Sopko, the owner of Nitra sugar mill and cannery. Facing threat of violence, director of Sopko's company SK-pen was forced to conclude a deal on sale of several lands owned by the company. They also forced Sopko to surrender 6 million SKK and transferred another 14 million SKK from Sopko's bank account to themselves. According to Sopko the so-called Nitra Mafia is intertwined with the Movement for a Democratic Slovakia (HZDS). The extorted businessman turned to th e financial investigation department of the police as well as the state police.The extortionists threatened to kill him if he goes to the police again. "After these developments and the political situation in Slovakia, where one political party can do what it wants with the fates of people," Sopko and his spouse decided to flee abroad on October 7.