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12-04-2014 17:53 | Ian Willoughby

Press: Ex-minister gets suspended sentence over fraud

A Prague district court on Thursday gave city councillor and former cabinet member Karel Březina a one-year suspended sentence for alleged fraud at the Prague transport authority, Právo reported on Saturday, citing a judge. Mr. Březina, who was minister without portfolio in a Social Democrat government, has denied the charges and is expected to appeal. He is accused of concealing from the transport authority that a company on whose supervisory board he sat had gone into bankruptcy. For this he lost the right to be chairman of the supervisory board of the transport authority. However, he continued to draw a salary and bonuses for the position (which he has since reassumed).

Declining trust in EU legacy of previous euro-sceptic governments and president, says Sobotka

Czechs’ declining trust in the European Union is the legacy of previous euro-sceptic governments and euro-sceptic former president Václav Klaus, the prime minister, Bohuslav Sobotka said on Friday evening after a meeting with the chairman of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz. For his part Mr. Schulz said the EU’s biggest problem was a loss of faith in both European and national institutions. The Czech Republic joined the bloc on May 1, 2004. A recent opinion poll suggested only 34% of Czechs trust the EU, the lowest figure since regular the survey was introduced in 1994.

Two Prague taxi drivers murdered after picking up fares in centre

Two Prague taxi drivers were murdered on Thursday night, the police said on Saturday. The bodies of a man of 60 and a man of 26 were found at Uhříněves on the outskirts of Prague on Friday. There cars were also recovered. Police said the two had been killed on the job after picking up fares in the centre of the city. They have warned taxi drivers to exercise caution.

Health Ministry plans to encourage schools to remove vending machines offering unhealthy foods

The Ministry of Health is planning to encourage the removal of vending machines offering crisps, chocolate and other unhealthy foods from Czech elementary schools, Czech Radio reported. The majority of the country’s elementary schools feature such machines. Health Minister Marcel Chládek said he would not ban them but rather provide schools with sufficient funding so as not to need the extra income they bring. However, a school director told Czech Radio that the vending machines generated a negligible amount and that parents wanted them to remain.

Havel tribute wax sculpture finds permanent home in Litomyšl

A sculpture made of wax from candles laid at various spots in the Czech Republic following the death of Václav Havel has found a permanent home in the town of Litomyšl in East Bohemia. The object is in the shape of a love heart, referencing the heart that Mr. Havel, who died in 2012, used to draw under his autograph. After being exhibited at various places, the sculpture, designed by artists Lukáš Gavlovský and Roman Švejda, will now remain in the basement of a chateau in Litomyšl.

Sparta beat Slavia 3:0 in 281st Prague derby

The traditional Prague derby ended in 3:0 win for Sparta over Slavia at the former’s Letná stadium on Saturday. The goals came from Lafata, Hušbauer and Dočkal. The points gap between the two sides going into the game was a record 38, with Sparta topping the table and Slavia third from bottom. Around 80 of Slavia fans were detained for hooliganism ahead of the match, which was the 281st time the two clubs had met.

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