A Prague court has given Public Affairs (VV) founder MP Vít Bárta a suspended sentence for having tried to bribe then fellow party members via interest-free loans for their “silence and loyalty”; Jaroslav Škárka, who accepted the money, was given three years in prison and banned from serving in parliament for 10 years. The verdicts are subject to appeal.
František Dohnal, the former head of the Supreme Audit Office (NKÚ) who was forced to resign after being given a conditional prison sentence after blocking members of the lower house of parliament from carrying out checks on his office, will get a Kč 650,000 pay-off, the office’s controlling body has decided.
A Prague court this week upheld a suspended prison sentence on Supreme Audit Office (NKÚ) head František Dohnal for refusing MPs access to its books, and now he’s out. Politicians — despite public denials — long ago began working to ensure their favorites get on the short list of candidates to replace him; sources tell Czech Position they inlcude the PM’s chief advisor Martin Říman and MP Zdeňka Horníková (both ODS) and Miroslav Vaněk of the ÚZSVM.
The head of the Czech Republic’s main spending watchdog has finally been brought to book for refusing checks on the housekeeping of his own institution, the Supreme Audit Office (NKÚ). A Prague court confirmed an earlier eight-month suspended prison sentence on František Dohnal, spelling the end of the line for the man who had refused the right of members of parliament to look over its books.
Lieutenant colonel Zdeněk Ondráček of the Czech special police unit for uncovering corruption and financial crime, (ÚOKFK), is one of many long-time officers quitting the force. Ondráček says low pay was part of the reason, but he also felt he could not really carry out his work to the best of his abilities and draw on his years of experience — and saw no prospect of that situation changing.
Czech Police detective Lt. Col. Zdeněk Ondráček — who led investigations into the heavily criticized Opencard tender and suspected abuse of office by supreme auditor František Dohnal — recently left the Unit for Combating Corruption and Finance Crime (ÚOKFK) after more than 22 years on the job. He is just one of dozens of elite detecitves who have quit or soon plan to, feeling hamstrung in their efforts to tackle high-profile corruption cases.
Supreme Audit Office (NKÚ) president František Dohnal was found guilty on Monday of abuse of power for blocking attempts by the lower house's Budgetary Control Committee to inspect the NKÚ's books. Reacting to the ruling PM Petr Nečаs said Dohnal’s position as NKÚ chief is now untenable. But Dohnal has appealed the decision and may hold on to the post — and his salary — until he has exhausted all legal options.
The agreement between the Czech private equity group PPF controlled by billionaire Petr Kellner and developers CPI about the sale of seven of the real estate group’s companies may well influence negotiations over where the Supreme Audit Office (NKÚ) will be headquartered. The book value of the Tokovo building, including land, where it now sits is Kč 1.1 billion; many MPs say it’s a steep price to pay.
The Defense Ministry has scaled back plans from 2003 to sell dozens of Prague properties, with just two buildings now slated for sale, the Jan Žižka barracks and Invalidovna, both in Prague 8–Karlín. The buildings will be offered to other state institutions, and while the Faculty of Arts of Charles University has shown interest in the barracks, the Supreme Audit Office is another possibility.
The Prague 7 district court on Friday found Supreme Audit Office (NKÚ) František Dohnal not guilty of breach-of-trust for having made use of the apartments — and three luxury cars — at taxpayers’ expense. According to the charge, he had cost the state Kč 1.1 million in damages. Dohnal, who is under investigation for refusing to open the NKÚ’s books for an audit by the parliamentary Budgetary Control Committee, has said the charges have no merit and are part of a political campaign.