Case of Václav Klaus Amnesty

The Anticorruption Endowment (NFPK) has received the text, from regional and high courts and public prosecutors, of a resolution concerning the abolition part of the Václav Klaus amnesty. It follows that the persons, whose prosecution was halted on the basis of this amnesty, are thought to have wreaked damages totalling at least 18.6 billion crowns. Further damages to the tune of at least 3.4 billion crowns were staved off. But they are believed to have harmed more than 90,000 natural persons and hundreds of businesses.

In our opinion, the description of actions committed by prosecuted—and amnestied—individuals harbours priceless outputs, illustrating not only the post-revolutionary developments in the Czech Republic, but also some the main actors. It should be noted that many prosecuted defendants would have normally landed in jail for up to 12 years, but their doings were reviewed and their potential sentences reduced in compliance with the new Criminal Code, applicable since January 2010. The offenders concerned thus “fitted” in the magical ten-year brackets. By a stroke of Václav Klaus’s (maybe Chilean) pen, and the countersignature of Prime Minister Petr Nečas, a colossal, lengthy endeavour of the police corps, public prosecutors and judges was reduced to nil…

The texts of the rulings thus enable the general public to look “under the lid” of the decisions taken by justice officials on the face of different interpretations of one and the same amnesty text. Thus, in the course of verification of the duration of criminal proceedings with regard to the above-mentioned eight-year period, the question arose if the total length of criminal proceedings can be reduced by the length of proceedings against a fugitive, during which time the accused demonstrably obstructed the process. While one Prague High Court judge (and not only he) answered in the affirmative, another member of the same court said no. There are many interpretational conflicts to be observed in the rulings.

The Anticorruption Endowment Board of Trustees has voted to publish the full names of the amnestied persons, if they could be traced after the fact.

“The Klaus amnesty harmed all of us in a terrible way. I can tell that the amount of damage and the number of immediately affected persons took me by surprise. I expected the count will be steep, but this is really astounding. But the financial impact is dimmed when compared with the public morale effect. Klaus sent a message to all and sundry that crime pays dividends. I believe the activities of the Klaus High Treason civic association has mitigated the worst impacts and Klaus’s crime didn’t pay.

This document is dedicated to the people whom the amnesty robbed of their last hopes for justice and we hope that in time, their faith in justice shall be restored. We sincerely appreciate and thank to all those, whose painstaking efforts are directed to make criminals face formal and moral justice,” NFPK founder Karel Janeček says of the outcomes of our analysis.

The Anticorruption Endowment is a fully independent initiative by people radically unprepared to accept a high level of corruption in state administration. One of our goals is to help expose corruption in state administration and support projects exposing corruption.

Enclosures – Ruling on the termination of criminal proceedings based on Article II of President Václav Klaus’s amnesty decree of 1 January 2013 (in Czech):