Ivo Blahout, a pub owner in the West Bohemian town of Rokycany, was fined 8,000 crowns - that's around 200 dollars - on Tuesday for ordering his staff to refuse entry to Roma customers.
Mr Blahout rejects the charges of racial discrimination and says he was merely defending his business; Roma rights organisations meanwhile are up in arms at the modest fine. has the story.
Mr Blahout says he issued the order in 1995, after a group of Roma guests smashed up his pub in a fight. He vowed never to let them enter his pub again. When Roma guests attempted to enter the building, waiters would inform them that all the tables were reserved. A few months later a group of Roma activists visited the pub to see for themselves. They too were turned away, and immediately filed a law suit against Mr Blahout.
Kumar Vishwanatan is an Indian community worker who works with the Roma in the city of Ostrava.
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