Judges warn of return to slow handling of cases unless staff numbers rise


Czech judges have warned that if the number of administrative workers in the judicial system is not increased, the quality of the court system will fall back to what it was in the 1990s. The president of the judges union, Tomáš Lichovník, said the financial crisis had resulted in increased workloads, which combined with a shortage of skilled staff threatened a return to the often slow handling of cases seen in the past. Mr Lichovník said he welcomed a statement by the three parties currently in talks on forming a new government promising to fund the hiring of more court officials and assistants. Meanwhile, the judges have warned that if their wages are cut as part of austerity measures they could take the matter to the Constitutional Court.