Hockey club Zlín has forced a deciding seventh game in the Extraliga playoff finals, defeating rivals for the championship title Plzeň on Friday. Zlín turned the match around early in the second period with two goals in quick succession. The club went on to win by a score of 5:2. The final game takes places on Sunday evening.
President Miloš Zeman on Friday met for the second time at Prague Castle with the head of the trade union’s umbrella organisation ČMKOS, Jaroslav Zavadil. During the meeting, issues discussed included the boosting of the economy, with Mr Zeman outlining he would sit in on a future tripartite session of the government, trade unions and business representatives. As president, Mr Zeman has promised to take a more hands-on approach than his predecessor; the next tripartite meeting is on April 25 and is scheduled to tackle issues of economic growth and the minimum wage; but the president is only expected to make the session after that, held in late June.
As details emerged about the Boston Marathon bombing suspects on Friday, there was apparent confusion among some on the social networks about the wanted brothers’ origins. Some mistakenly suggested they had roots in the Czech Republic, in central Europe, as opposed to an area near Chechnya, in the north Caucasus, as had been reported. The suspects Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, were described by family and law officials as “coming from a Russian region near Chechnya”. The Czech ambassador to the US, Petr Gandalovic, released a statement trying to clear up the matter; he called the mistake “unfortunate”.
A 25-year-old pedestrian crossing at an unlit section of road near Hradec Králové was struck and killed on Friday night by an oncoming ambulance. The ambulance driver swerved at the last second but was unable to avoid the collision; the vehicle continued another 20 metres before coming to a stop. The ambulance did not have warning lights on but was not transporting any other passengers.
The inspection team for the Prague City Police force is investigating the suspicious purchase of silver bars last year for 512,000 crowns. The force bought 40 small bars in order to recognise officers for outstanding service. Investigators are now going over details of the purchase, gauging the weight and quality of the silver against the purchasing price; they have also requested additional documentation. The head of the police admitted that based on the investigation so far, wrongdoing could not fully be ruled out. The silver was bought during a period when the force was led by deputy head Ludvík Klema, after former police chief, Vladimír Kotrouš, was remanded in custody on corruption charges.
A Prague municipal court ruled for the plaintiff on Thursday in the first of thousands of ongoing court cases against banks and lending institutions. Michal Novák will receive 4,200 crowns from Hypoteční banka as compensation for being charged a maintenance fee for his loan account. Around 130 thousand clients have filed similar charges against major financial institutions from which they had taken out loans or mortgages and this decision may serve as a precedent for upcoming trials.
President Miloš Zeman met with former finance minister Jiří Rusnok on Friday to discuss the setting up of a special fund, where the president is planning to deposit 30% of his monthly salary as a symbolic contribution towards repaying the Czech national debt, which last year amounted to almost 1,700 billion crowns. In addition to donating a portion of his own monthly salary, which totals over 300,000 crowns, President Zeman is planning to encourage other potential donors to follow his example.
The anti-corruption police have filed charges against former health minister Tomáš Julínek, according to press reports on Friday. The former Civic Democrat minister has been charged with abuse of office and breach of trust for allowing two private companies to take over the operation of air ambulances in 2008. The move has so far cost the state around 800 million crowns, which is the difference between the private operators’ expenses and those of the ministries of interior and defence, which previously provided the service. Mr Julínek, who could face up to 10 years in jail if found guilty, will not be taken into custody for the duration of the investigation.
Prague’s fairgrounds are hosting a festival of healthy living called Festival Evolution from Friday to Sunday. This is an umbrella event for four related exhibits focused on organic food, sustainable energy use, personal development and alternative lifestyles. The event is open to the public and offers hundreds of stands, workshops and lectures.
The mayor of the town Hostivice near Prague has filed criminal charges against an unknown perpetrator at the Prague regional court who disclosed personal details of the defendants in the case against the former Central Bohemia governor David Rath. The mayor of the town where Mr Rath has permanent residency claims that the regional court violated the privacy law by releasing to the public information about all of the 11 people accused in the ongoing case.
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