Czech court postpones hearing in case of anti-Romani signs posted at site of former concentration camp to hear explanation of mobile phone data
On 27 September the District Court in Písek postponed the main hearing and presentation of evidence in the case of two men whom police say placed a sign with insulting inscriptions about Romani people on the grounds of the memorial to the Holocaust and its Romani victims at Lety u Písku. Judge Martin Král postponed the hearing until November in order to analyze information about movements of the defendants based on mobile phone records.
A police technician will explain the data about the mobile phone movements to the court. The men, aged 22 and 35, face sentences of between six months and three years in prison if found guilty of felony denial and approval of genocide.
The concentration camp near the village of Lety imprisoned Romani people prior to their deportation to Auschwitz during the Second World War. The sign with the insulting inscriptions was discovered by people on the grounds of the memorial at the close of May and start of June 2018.
News server Romea.cz drew attention to the case, reporting that the signs read "This memorial is dedicated to the last Romani people in history to ever work on the territory of the Czech Republic." Romea.cz reported that the sign was installed at the memorial by the nationalist group "Us against All" (My proti všem).
Zbyněk Polívka, the prosecutor in Písek, charged Matouš Bulíř and Pavel Kozák in March of this year over the incident. Judge Král said on 27 September that the data about the mobile phone movements is essential evidence.
"The movements of the phone numbers make no sense with respect to the timeline of events, I will want the police technician to explain them," the judge said. According to him, records show the numbers appearing first in Northern Bohemia and then suddenly in Southern Bohemia, and they continue to bounce all over the country at very brief intervals which the judge says "do not make sense".
The hearing was therefore postponed so the judge can summon a police technician as a witness. Prosecutor Polívka told the Czech News Agency and Czech Television that they have to wait for the movements of the mobile phone numbers to be entered into evidence, as they are essential to his case.
"It's true, the movements must be explained by the technician. The evidence is meant to demonstrate where the people involved were and eventually to refute their claims. During the first (court) hearing the data refuted their claims about their movements, one alleged he had been at Lety and the other cast doubt on that, this evidence should clarify what happened," the prosecutor said.
Bulíř and Kozák, according to Polívka, documented their behavior when installing the insulting signs about Romani people by posting photographs of themselves doing so to a website. "Experts and witnesses have also expressed their views on that. It's documented, I will summarize it in my closing remarks," the prosecutor said.
Both the defendants and their attorneys refused to give a statement to the Czech News Agency about the case. According to historians, 1 308 children, men and women passed through the camp at Lety from August 1942 to May 1943, 327 of whom died there and more than 500 of whom were deported to the Auschwitz death camp.
After the war, fewer than 600 Romani concentration camp prisoners returned to Bohemia and Moravia. Experts estimate the Nazis murdered 90 % of the Roma indigenous to Bohemia and Moravia.
- ROMEA TV: Irrefutable evidence found that industrial pig farm was built on top of former concentration camp for Roma
- Czech archaeologists discover two graves of Romani concentration camp victims at Lety u Písku
- Czech archaeological survey confirms human remains are located in the vicinity of current memorial to WWII-era concentration camp for Roma
- Archaeological survey continues at site of former concentration camp for Roma in Czech Republic
- Czech Communist Party chair alleges pork is expensive because the farm on the former concentration camp for Roma was closed, but statistics show he is lying
- EEA and Norway Grants will support building of memorial to Romani victims of the Holocaust at former concentration camp site
- VIDEO: Commemorative ceremony at the former Lety concentration camp attended by 200 people
- LIVE AT NOON TODAY: Commemoration at the former concentration camp for Roma in Lety, Czech Republic
- Commemoration at WWII-era concentration camp for Roma in Czech Republic to give Award for Humanity in memoriam to Dr Alfred Bader
- Nazi concentration camp survivors say authors of hateful online comments should be ashamed of themselves
- Czech Police ask lower house to lift immunity on MP who called Romani genocide site a "non-existing pseudo-concentration camp"
- Czech historian reminds public that cruel abuse was perpetrated at concentration camp for Roma in Moravia
- Eduard Oláh, sculptor and stonemason who designed memorial to the Romani victims of Hodonín concentration camp, has passed away
- Patrik Banga: How can people in the Czech Republic write about reviving the concentration camps?
- Czech presidential candidate welcomes buyout of farm on site of former concentration camp for Roma
- Director of Terezín Initiative Institute invites Czech politicians to join tour of former concentration camp for Roma
- Unique Czechoslovak film from 1960 about the concentration camp for Roma at Lety screening on Romea.cz
- Exhibit touring Prague shows how Roma lived before being imprisoned in concentration camps
- Czech library to exhibit all designs submitted for the future Lety u Písku Memorial to the Holocaust of the Roma and Sinti
- Czech demolition of pig farm on former WWII-era concentration camp for Roma delayed one year, future new memorial said to be unaffected
- Holocaust survivors and remembrance organizations object to how younger generation is using TikTok to commemorate victims
- Czech Radio moderator poses for photo with right-wing extremist, but public broadcaster says the rules were not broken
- Czech ceremony commemorating Romani prisoners sent to Auschwitz on 20 August attended by more than 150 people
- Slovak Prime Minister says the Holocaust and its Romani victims must be remembered so that its "bloody history" will never be repeated
- VIDEO: Commemoration at former concentration camp in Czech Republic remembers Romani victims of Auschwitz, Human Rights Commissioner expresses support for a Romani Commissioner
- Czech Government Human Rights Commissioner: I support the creation of a Government Commissioner for Romani Minority Affairs
- LIVE BROADCAST Sunday at noon CET: European Roma Holocaust Memorial Day commemoration at Lety u Písku, Czech Republic
- Czech website on the Holocaust launches database of victims labeled "cikáni" by the Nazis and their accomplices
- Commemoration at WWII-era concentration camp for Roma in Czech Republic to give Award for Humanity to Gwendolyn Albert
- Winning design for new memorial to the Holocaust of the Roma and Sinti in the Czech Republic features enormous circle at the site of the former concentration camp