Czech basketball player Luboš Bartoň is leaving the top domestic devision club Děčín to play for Valencia in the Spanish Liga Endesa. The 33-year-old forward came to Děčín at the start of the season from the German club Phantoms Braunschweig; he played 16 games in the Czech league, averaging over 12 points per game. He returns to Spain where he played for various clubs between 2005 and 2012.
Czech fugitive Radovan Krejčíř has been denied bail by a South African court after his attorneys on Friday failed to convince the court Mr Krečíř would not flee the country. Radovan Krejčíř and three of his local associates are being held in police custody on charges of kidnapping and attempted murder. Mr Krejčíř is wanted in the Czech Republic where he was sentenced to 11 years in jail for fraud. He fled the country and eventually settled in South Africa in 2007.
The Czech NGO called Give Our State Back on Friday filed a lawsuit against former prime minister Petr Nečas over his role in the controversial amnesty declared in January 2013 by then president Václav Klaus. In his role as the prime minister, Mr Nečas counter-signed the amnesty; however, the news website aktualne.cz reported Mr Nečas said he only signed the document in return for the president’s consent with some of his government’s legislation. The NGO believes Mr Nečas abused his power by agreeing to the deal. The amnesty of president Václav Klaus freed about 6,500 convicts and halted the prosecution of some long-running corruption cases.
A former employee of the state-owned forestry firm Lesy ČR has been charged with corruption in public procurement, the police said on Friday. The man, identified by the media as the firm’s former IT manager Jan Přibyl, was detained earlier this week. The investigation was triggered by the Finance Ministry which found last year the forestry firm awarded hundreds of millions of crowns worth of IT contracts to the same two companies over the period of several years.
Liberec beat Portugal’s Estoril 2:1 away in their final game of Europa League’s group stage on Thursday night, booking a berth in the competition’s knock-out stage. Liberec, who join Czech titleholders Plzeň in the spring phase of Europa League, have qualified for the knockout stage for the first time in the club’s history.
In related news, the Christian Democrats are demanding a better deal in the distribution of ministerial posts, party leader Pavel Bělobrádek told the news site iDnes on Friday. The Christian Democrats, the weakest party in the potential coalition, are not prepared to accept two ministerial positions offered by their partners, and demand at least one more post, Mr Bělobrádek said. The Christian Democrats have been offered the culture and health ministries, neither of which they particularly wanted to manage. In a reaction, leader of the ANO party, Andrej Babiš rejected the demands and said the proposed distribution reflected the parties’ election results.
The Czech Food Inspection Office has warned there is still unlicensed and potentially dangerous alcohol on the market. In the third quarter inspectors checked out over 1,000 sales outlets and came across three which had alcohol without license stamps on stock. The warning comes ahead of the Christmas and New Year’s celebrations when the sale of alcoholic beverages skyrockets. Police say that in the wake of the methanol scandal which killed close to 40 people in the Czech Republic there could still be thousands of litres of dangerous, methanol-laced spirits on the market.
Czech swimmer Simona Baumrtová won the silver medal in 50 metres backstroke at the European Short Court Swimming Championships in Demark on Friday. The 22-year-old came in second in a new national record of 56.28 second, 0.29 second after winner Mie Nielsen of Denmark. The Czech mixed relay team took bronze in 4x50 metres medley, finishing third after Russia and Germany in 1:39.54.
The Slovak state-owned rail operator ZSSK has placed an order for eight electric train units of the 671 class, worth 77 million euro, or 2.1 billion crowns, with the Czech producer Škoda Vagonka, the Slovak company said on Friday. The first trains should be delivered by the end of next year, a spokeswoman for the rail operator said. The order came after the European Commission approved a project of modernization of suburban and regional railway transport in Slovakia.
The police have charged three foreign nationals over the murder of Latvian man whose body was found on the outskirts of Prague last week, a spokesman for the Prague police said. A Moldovan man and a Ukrainian woman have been detained and placed in police custody; the former has been charged with murder, the latter with a failure to report the crime. Another Moldovan national, suspected of taking part in the crime, is wanted by the police. If convicted, the woman faces three years in prison while the two men could land extraordinary sentence of 25 years.
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