The supreme state attorney, Renata Vesecka, has sacked Milan Horvath as head of her office's financial crime section, after Mr Horvath lost a briefcase containing files pertaining to the case of fugitive businessman Radovan Krejcir. The briefcase was stolen from Mr Horvath's car, which had been left parked in a street in Brno last Tuesday. Two men were apprehended in possession of the documents, which they had been trying to sell to various media outlets and Mr Krejcir's lawyers. The latter is in custody in South Africa. The Czech Republic has requested his extradition so he can face several charges including conspiracy to murder.
A special police team has been formed to help the search for a 13-year-old girl who went missing from a children's home in Brno a week ago. The police say they now believe it is possible that somebody is hiding Anna, and have raided a number of homes belonging to the girl's relatives. She had been in the care of Klara Mauerova, a 30-year-old woman who is in custody on charges of severely abusing her eight-year-old son. The authorities say they have no record of Anna's existence, and there is considerable confusion over her identity and even age.
Archaeologists have discovered a meat freezer in Usti nad Labem where 17 butchers died during World War II, Mlada fronta Dnes reported. The freezer was found beneath the town's main square. The butchers are believed to have been sheltering from an Allied air raid in April 1945. The premises were hit by a bomb, but the freezer continued working and the men succumbed to ammonia poisoning after the gas was released by its damaged cooling system. Eight of the butchers were Czech; the others were from France and Belgium.
The mayor of Prague, Pavel Bem, has reached the top of Mount Everest. Mr Bem, a senior figure in the Civic Democratic Party, becomes the tenth Czech to reach the world's highest peak. He is now on a two-day descent to his base camp, which experienced climbers say is the most dangerous part of the climb. Mr Bem was criticised both inside and outside his party for taking two months leave from his post as mayor of Prague.
Czech President Vaclav Klaus and members of the government representing
the country abroad held a meeting on Thursday to form a common position on
the European Union ahead of the EU summit in June. Speaking to journalists
after the meeting, Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek said Prague expects the
summit to produce a road map for the creation of a new document on the
EU's future role. This document should ideally not be called a
constitution, not create the post of EU foreign minister, leave out the
human rights charter, and should give individual member states the right
to re-vote on issues decided in Brussels that threaten their sovereignty.
Before the summit, Mr Topolanek also hopes to discuss the Czech position with his outgoing British counterpart Tony Blair and German Chancellor Angela Merkel whose country currently holds the EU presidency.
The Czech market is witnessing record sales in motorcycles. In the first four months of this year, 6,704 new motorcycles were sold - 40 percent more than last year. The boom has been attributed to the fact that prices of motorbikes have gone down making it affordable for Czechs to buy Japanese, European, and American makes.
A new opinion poll suggests that most Czechs believe the government's public finance reform plan will worsen living standards in terms of health, education, and employment. According to the poll, conducted by the Factum Invenium agency this month, Czechs are pessimistic about life after retirement, fearing that pensions will be low and care of the elderly will be poor.
Hospital staff in the west Bohemian town of Karlovy Vary had to fight for the lives of patients after a power cut left them without electricity for two hours. A blackout on Wednesday night had the hospital run on emergency power for forty-five minutes when the generator suddenly failed too. Of the 300 patients in the hospital, four of them were in critical condition and doctors and nurses had to operate their medical instruments manually to keep them alive. It has yet to be determined why the generator failed.
The remains of over three dozen German WWII soldiers have been found near the Moravian town of Olomouc. The soldiers are believed to have been killed by the Red Army at the end of the Second World War. The German union for the protection and care of war graves has commissioned a company from northern Bohemia to exhume the remains.
Police in Moravia's capital Brno are preparing for what is expected to be one of their biggest security operations when seventeen presidents of Central and Eastern Europe meet in the city later this month. The presidential summit is scheduled for May 24-26 and will be guarded by special units as well as some 800 police officers. The deputy head of the south Moravian police, Martin Kotlan, says it is the biggest security operation since Queen Elizabeth visited Brno in 1996.
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Rare Terezín concentration camp artefacts found in attic of private home
Czechs observe day of mourning for pop idol Karel Gott
Thousands pay tribute to deceased national pop icon Karel Gott