Monday, May 6, 2013

News 5.6.2013

Copyright (c) 2013 Radio Prague (Cesky Rozhlas 7 - Radio Praha)

News Monday, May 6th, 2013

By: Jan Velinger

* The Prague State Attorney's Office has filed charges against lobbyist
Roman Janousek for his role in a hit-and-run last year.

* President Milos Zeman has charged that a former legal aide at Prague
Castle was a co-author of the highly controversial article 2 in this
year's presidential amnesty.

* Classes at schools that were affected by a massive explosion in
Prague last week have resumed.

* The Supreme Court has rejected an appeal in a case involving Marta
Kubisova and fellow singer Helena Vondrackova.

* Jiri Slegr may give up his seat in the Chamber of Deputies to return
to hockey, according to Czech daily Lidove noviny.

State attorney's office charges Janousek with attempted murder

The Prague State Attorney's Office has filed charges against lobbyist
Roman Janousek for his role in a hit-and-run last year in the Czech
capital. In the incident, the suspect is alleged to have struck a
fellow driver who had gotten out of her vehicle after he hit her car
from behind. Under the influence of alcohol (later shown in a
breathalyser test) he then sped from the scene. Mr Janousek has been
charged with attempted murder and endangering the public due to
intoxication; if found guilty in the case Mr Janousek could face up to
18 years in jail.

Zeman blames Hasenkopf for controversial article 2

In a statement released on Monday, President Milos Zeman charged that
Pavel Hasenkopf - a former legal aide at Prague Castle - was a
co-author of the highly controversial article 2 in this year's
presidential amnesty. The article halted legal proceedings, including
major cases of economic crime and corruption, lasting eight years or
longer. Mr Zeman released the statement after studying material at the
weekend provided by Mr Hasenkopf, who has himself strongly denied

The news website idnes suggests the president based his conclusion
primarily on an email between Hasenkopf and former presidential aide
Ladislav Jakl dated October 22 of last year, in which the lawyer
suggested that cases that had been tied-up in the courts for years
could be halted. Hasenkopf told news website idnes that while he
prepared key steps to that aim, they were limited only to certain kinds
of cases and had been radically altered in the final amnesty declared
by the president. For his part, former president Vaclav Klaus told
Pravo at the weekend that he and he alone was the author of the amnesty
declared on January 1.

Peres confirms Zeman visit to Israel

Israeli President Shimon Peres confirmed in talks on Monday with Czech
Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg, that the Czech head-of-state,
Milos Zeman, will visit the country in October. The last time Mr Zeman
visited Israel was as Czech prime minister in 2002, when he raised
controversy by comparing then Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat to Adolf
Hitler. His statements, made in an interview for the Ha'aretz
newspaper, drew condemnation both from the Arab world and Brussels. Mr
Schwarzenberg is in Jerusalem to discuss the next Czech-Israeli
inter-governmental meeting to take place in July, when Prime Minister
Petr Necas and his counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu, as well as some
cabinet ministers, will attend.

Classes resume week after explosion

Classes at FAMU film school and the Social Sciences Faculty of Charles
University resumed on Monday a week after a massive explosion rocked an
adjacent building in Prague's Divadleni Street. A suspected gas
explosion saw one floor collapse at the site, and glass and debris
thrown into the street. Windows in all of the surrounding buildings
were also shattered by the shockwave that left more than 40 people
injured - one of them seriously. Police, fire fighters and rescue
workers had to block off the area as a result and the building had to
be reinforced by a construction and engineering crew to prevent it from

Supreme Court rejects appeal in Golden Kids case

Singer Marta Kubisova will not have to pay Agentura MM Praha 1.38
million crowns over a "cancelled" Golden Kids tour, the Supreme Court
has confirmed. The court rejected an appeal by the agency and upheld a
decision by the Prague Municipal Court in 2010 that there was never a
written or verbal contract over which Ms. Kubisova could be sued.
Agentura MM Praha, representing singer Helena Vondrackova, claims that
Marta Kubisova backed out of tour plans already agreed, thus causing
damages. The firm's representative Martin Michal (who is Mrs
Vondrackova's husband) said the agency will petition the Constitutional

Head of citizen's initiative charged by police

Police have charged Slavek Popelka, the head of a citizen's initiative
Holesovska vyzva (Holesovska appeal) with violence against an official,
the spokesman for Prague's municipal police, Tomas Hulan, has said.
During a demonstration in April the 57-year-old Popelka - who was
blocking traffic in front of the office of the government - allegedly
drove his vehicle into a police officer - a charge that carries a
sentence of up to four years in prison.

Slegr may give up seat in Chamber of Deputies

MP Jiri Slegr has admitted he may give up his seat in the Chamber of
Deputies to return to the sport of hockey, Czech daily Lidove noviny
writes. Slegr, one of the faces of the LEV 21 party, founded by former
Social Democrat leader and former prime minister Jiri Paroubek, told
the daily he was considering the idea of playing for Litvinov and said
the posts clearly were not compatible. Slegr is a former defenceman and
both a Stanley Cup champion and Olympic gold medal winner. If he steps
down, he will be replaced by Petr Benda, party leader Jiri Paroubek

BESIP launches week-long road safety campaign

Monday, May 6th sees the beginning of a week-long campaign for road
safety in the Czech Republic, this year focussing on pedestrians. On
Monday, representatives of BESIP's Road Safety Department (which falls
under the Transport Ministry) launched a new ad featuring the country's
president, Milos Zeman. In the video, Mr Zeman voiced support for the
week-long campaign but also expressed opposition to what he termed
"dangerous sports", which he said directly or indirectly threatened
young lives. He pointed specifically to rally car racing in the Czech
Republic, a sport that has seen a number of fatalities in recent years,
both of drivers and onlookers. The president voiced the opinion that
such sports should be banned. The campaign wraps up on May 12.

Police are searching for person who piled rocks on train tracks

Police are searching for a suspect who piled rocks in several areas
along a train route in the area of Sumperk. In at least one case, the
train driver noticed in time was able to stop and remove the 65 stones
over a three metre distance; in others the trains passed through
without incident. The suspect is wanted for endangering the public the
police have asked the public for help.

Hockey: Czechs face Swiss at Worlds

The Czech Republic's national hockey team faces the Swiss at the Ice
Hockey World Championship on Monday afternoon. The Swiss so far have
been the surprise of the tournament, upending first hosts Sweden and
then Canada. The Czechs have won one and lost one so far. They beat
Belarus but were defeated by Sweden 2:1 despite an outstanding
performance by goalie Salak, who will be in net again against the Swiss


Upcoming days should be sunny to partly cloudy, with some storm
activity and possible rain showers. Daytime temperatures will hold at
around 20 to 22 degrees Celsius.

Articles posted on today

Czechs and Poles to boost food safety links

In a meeting in Prague on Monday, the Czech and Polish agriculture
ministers addressed a long-running dispute over the quality of Polish
food imports to the Czech Republic. In what may prove to be the first
step to defusing the row, the Czech agriculture minister, Petr Bendl,
and his Polish counterpart, Stanislaw Kalemba, have agreed to boost
cooperation and to improve the exchange of information between their
food inspection agencies.

People will pay for quality online news, says iHNed boss Lucie

How are Czech newspapers dealing with the shift to an online world? Is
their present, mainly free model sustainable? And what will the media
landscape look like in a decade? One person well placed to discuss
these and similar questions is Lucie Tvaruzkova. She is the boss of
iHNed, the news website of the leading Czech financial daily
Hospodarske noviny, whose data journalism team recently won a
prestigious award.

Sports News 6.5.2013

In Sports News this Monday: Czechs get off to winning start at World
Ice Hockey Championship with win over Belarus but are comprehensively
outshot in defeat to hosts Sweden; Plzen open up five-point gap on
Sparta in the race for the Czech soccer title; and Slavia trounce
Jablonec in first game under Petrous following his return.

This e-mail is sent to you automatically according to the settings you
chose at To change the settings, click
here. (C) 2013, Radio Prague - the international service of Czech Radio,
all rights reserved., E-mail: