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September 23, 2018
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Petr Benda, convicted of having shot a young Romani man to death in the summer of 2017 at a housing estate in Chomutov, is shown here during the main hearing of his trial on 4 April 2018. (PHOTO:  Tereza Heková)
Petr Benda, convicted of having shot a young Romani man to death in the summer of 2017 at a housing estate in Chomutov, is shown here during the main hearing of his trial on 4 April 2018. (PHOTO: Tereza Heková)

Czech appeals court reduces sentence for murder of Romani man to seven years, prosecutor calls it disproportionate, inhumane and unjust

3.9.2018 14:57 Petr Benda has been sentenced on appeal to just seven years in prison for shooting dead the driver of a van on a housing estate in the Czech town of Chomutov. The High Court in Prague announced the verdict on 28 August, overturning the original verdict, which would have sent the perpetrator behind bars for 12.5 years.  full story

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Czech Supreme Court overturns acquittal on publication of Hitler's speeches, wants more evidence

7.7.2018 9:20 The Czech Supreme Court has overturned the acquittal in the case of the publication of a book of speeches by Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler in Czech translation. The case has been returned to the state prosecutor for further investigation and the accumulation of more evidence.  full story

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Czech court rules activists did not enrich themselves by using abandoned building, state may go to Supreme Court

22.6.2018 10:32 The Autonomous Social Center "Klinika" and its representative, Tereza Virtová, do not have to pay the state CZK 360 000 [EUR 14 000] for using real estate in Prague 3 during 2016 for several months without authorization. On 20 June the appeals venue, the Prague Municipal Court, upheld the previous verdict from the first-instance District Court, which rejected a lawsuit filed by the state and found that no "unjust enrichment" had occurred.  full story

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Czech court rules in favor of songwriter's widow, xenophobic band loses prize named after him without authorization

22.6.2018 8:40 The Czech organization that gave a music award named after the songwriter Karel Kryl to the frontman for the xenophobic Ortel band, Tomáš Ortel, have lost their appeal of the lawsuit filed against them by the songwriter's widow. The Gold Award for the Legacy of Karel Kryl was given to Ortel last spring by a group called People for the People (Lidé lidem) that actually was not authorized to use the songwriter's name at all.
 full story

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Czech court acquits police officer, says use of force against Romani harvester was legal, state to appeal

17.6.2018 11:13

The use by police of a collapsible truncheon against a harvester of legally-grown technical hemp from a field in the Česká Lípa district was not criminal, according to a court in Česká Lípa that acquitted the officer on 14 June. The defendant had faced up to five years in prison for abusing his powers.

 full story

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Czech politician not to be compensated over nickname, courts say reasonable use of it is allowed

16.5.2018 19:23 Czech MP Tomio Okamura ("Freedom and Direct Democracy" - SPD), a vice-chair of the Czech lower house, has failed with his legal appeal over a dispute caused by the use of a nickname for him, "Pitomio" [loose translation - "Tomidiot"] by the Czech weekly magazine Reflex. Okamura appealed a previous court ruling that instructed the magazine to apologize to the politician for using the nickname in two articles in 2013 but did not award him compensation, and the judiciary has at a more general level admitted that it is possible to use the "Pitomio" nickname as part of justified criticism of the public figure.  full story

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Czech trial of last year's murder of a Romani man in Chomutov, defendant claims he was trying to protect people

9.4.2018 14:57 On 4 April the Regional Court in Ústí nad Labem began to hear the case of last year's murder at a housing estate in Chomutov. Petr Benda (age 37) faces up to 20 years in prison and has been charged with firing his weapon 13 times at a van being driven by Radek Š.  full story

Czech prosecutor indicts shooter for murder, refutes police report that he was responding to victim driving into people

14.2.2018 7:20 The gunman who shot a 34-year-old Romani man to death on Jirkovská Street at the Písečná housing estate in Chomutov last May has been charged with murder and property
damage and faces between 12 and 20 years in prison if convicted. The case will be tried by the Regional Court in Ústí nad Labem.  full story

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Czech Constitutional Court receives complaint over buyout of pig farm on Romani genocide site

2.2.2018 7:03 The Czech Constitutional Court received a complaint in mid-January about the approval of the handover of the pig farm in Lety (Písek district) to the state. The daily Lidové noviny (LN) reported yesterday that the filing concerns the decree through which the previous coalition government of Bohuslav Sobotka (Czech Social Democratic Party - ČSSD) approved of the purchase last August.  full story

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Czech Green Party co-chair wants Interior Ministry to dissolve the "Freedom and Direct Democracy" Movement

3.1.2018 10:55 News server Info.cz reported last week that Ondřej Mirovský, co-chair of the Czech Republic's Green Party, has said he wants to ask the Interior Ministry to dissolve Tomio Okamura's "Freedom and Direct Democracy" Movement (SPD). Mirovský made the decision after Okamura invited extremist politicians from all over Europe to Prague.
 full story

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Czech court gives suspended sentence to father who filmed himself instructing child to beat pillow and "Imagine it's a Gypsy"

21.11.2017 10:35 A Czech court has handed down its sentence against a man from the Benešov area who filmed himself urging his daughter to slam a baseball bat into a pillow while imagining she was beating a Muslim or Romani person. He uploaded footage of his parenting to social networking sites and charges were filed against him.  full story

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Slovak Police charge four eyewitnesses to raid on Romani settlement with making false accusations

12.9.2017 7:48 Slovak newspaper Denník N reported on 7 September that the Slovak Police are pressing charges of making false accusations against the men who alleged that officers beat them up during a raid on a Romani settlement in eastern Slovakia four years ago. The officers were initially charged themselves with trespassing and abusing the power of a public official through the indiscriminate use of force bordering on repression.  full story

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Attorneys for anarchist defendants allege Czech Police instigated plan for unrealized train attack

11.9.2017 7:14 Attorneys representing anarchists charged with planning a terrorist attack on a train in the Czech Republic are seeking their acquittal. The circumstances, according to them, only came about as a consequence of undercover police provocation.  full story

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Czech towns criticize abolition of ordinances about sitting, advisor to Labor Minister references "inadaptable gypsies"

30.7.2017 8:52 Earlier this month the Czech Constitutional Court declared unconstitutional the ordinances adopted by towns in North Bohemia banning people from sitting outdoors on anything other than a bench. The decision has sparked many reactions of disagreement.  full story

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Czech Constitutional Court decides local ordinances that ban sitting anywhere but on a bench are unconstitutional

16.7.2017 8:54 The Czech Constitutional Court has abolished the sections of ordinances issued by the towns of Litvínov and Varnsdorf that ban sitting in public anywhere but on a bench. Czech Public Defender of Rights Anna Šabatová filed a motion with the court over the decrees.  full story

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Czech Constitutional Court rejects complaint from municipality defending its 2006 eviction of Romani residents

5.6.2017 8:34 The Czech Constitutional Court Ústavní soud (ÚS) has rejected a complaint filed by the town of Vsetín about its protracted dispute with the Romani people whom it "deported" and forced to take up residence in municipalities outside of the Zlín Region altogether. The Czech News Agency reported the news on 1 June after discovering it in the judiciary's database.  full story

videoSlovakia: Attorney for abused boys says acquittal of police officers was illegal

20.5.2017 10:48 Vanda Durbáková, an attorney working with the Center for Civil and Human Rights in Slovakia, considers the recent acquittal of the police officers who abused Romani boys at a police station and were captured on film doing so to be illegal. "The District Court has just reiterated its decision of February 2015," the attorney said.  full story

Second acquittal from Slovak lower court for police officers filmed abusing Romani children at police station

18.5.2017 14:16 News server Novinky.cz reported yesterday that the District Court in Košice has again acquitted the police officers suspected of abusing Romani boys in March 2009 at a police station there. The lower court has simply reiterated its verdict from 2015, which was overturned by the Regional Court last year after the prosecutor appealed.  full story

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Czech High Court reduces sentence for local politician convicted of drug trafficking

11.5.2017 7:50 The High Court in Prague has reduced the sentence handed down to Marcel Cichý, a former city assembly member and teacher in Trmice, Czech Republic, for drug trafficking. Instead of the original seven and a half years in prison to which he was sentenced, he will now serve five.  full story

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Eight years since arson attack on Romani family in Czech town, perpetrators slow to pay compensation

20.4.2017 8:54 Eight years ago, in the late night hours of 18 April and early morning hours of 19 April 2009, four neo-Nazis - Václav Cojocaru, Jaromír Lukeš, Ivo Müller and David Vaculík - threw Molotov cocktails into a single-family home in the town of Vítkov (Opava district) where a Romani family lived. During the subsequent blaze, three people were injured including a two-year-old girl, Natálka, who suffered burns over 80 % of her body.  full story

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