Czech Position has obtained a detailed price offer from November 2005 addressed to the Ministry of Defense’s armament section that supports allegations that the Czech Army got a raw deal on the purchase of four CASA C-295 transport planes. The document is part of the file upon which the police are charging ex-defense minister Vlasta Parkanová for allegedly violating her fiduciary duties in signing off on a 2009 deal.
Prime Minister Petr Nečas (ODS) told a news conference on Wednesday he had ousted Justice Minister Jiří Pospíšil he had lost confidence in his fellow party member’s ability to manage his ministry and its finances, over a request for an extra Kč 1 billion for the Prison Service at a time of belt-tightening. But sources say it was Pospíšil’s shake-up of the judiciary system and failure to quickly appoint a top prosecutor to Nečas’ liking that led to his sacking.
The Czech police’s anti-corruption and financial crimes unit ÚOKFK has been investigating criminal complaints relating to the opaque brokerage Key Investments — into which nearly Kč 1 billion of public funds has apparently been lost or embezzled — for more than a year and a half. Finally, some politicians who had a hand in putting taxpayers’ money with the brokerage have been held to account.
Former head of the Czech anti-corruption police (ÚOKFK), Petr Vincenz, was in at the start of the long investigation that this week culminated by reeling in top Social Democrat (ČSSD) politician David Rath and seven other suspects in what appears to be a high-profile graft case. Now out of the force, he talks about the preconditions that helped pave the way for such an outcome and his fears and foreboding for how the special police squad that piloted the probe might end up.
Prague 5 has cancelled a “disadvantageous” contract with a Prague electricity distribution company signed by a former mayor of the district who went on to become the company’s deputy board chairman, the news server Novinky.cz reported on Wednesday.
Roman Janoušek — known as the “godfather” of the ODS in Prague for his influence at City Hall — is alleged to have intentionally run down the driver of a vehicle he smashed into on Friday. She had caught up with him up on foot while he was at a red light and tried to stop him from fleeing the scene. Apprehended later by the police, Janoušek appears to have treated gotten exceptional treatment. Former elite detective Zdeněk Ondráček outlines the charges he faces.
The Czech anti-corruption police (ÚOKFK) have filed a third set of criminal charges against former Prague 5 district mayor Milan Jančík, over transfer of claims on outstanding rents from a contract he signed when in office — without clearing the deal with the city council, and with a firm whose beneficial owners cannot be traced.
A special Czech police anti-corruption unit has filed charges against 17 members of the Social Democrats’ (ČSSD) Prague chapters for allegedly giving or receiving bribes, mainly in connection with preparing the center-left party’s list of candidates in parliamentary elections, Czech public television (ČT) and the daily Lidové noviny report. The Prague 9 district is at the center of the graft probe.
Investigations into suspected fraud involving millions of crowns in research funds were launched two years ago centered on two Brno Ph.D holders. But charges have only just been lodged against them, and Czech police appear to be having problems in putting their case together for lack of funds and expertise. The suspected scam reveals how easy it is to defraud the state of research funds – and difficult to detect.
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.