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Czech state attorney wants three years in jail for Qatari prince

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Prague, Sept 30 (CTK) – Czech state attorney Kamil Svec proposed yesterday three years in prison for Qatari Prince Hamid bin Abdal Thani who has been charged with sexual abuse of Czech school girls, procuring, threatening the moral education of youth and seduction.
Thani’s lawyer Josef Lzicar demands that he be released also because a long time has passed since Thani allegedly committed the crimes.
The court first gave Thani 2.5 years in prison, but an appeals panel abolished the verdict. The court now proceeds the case in Thani’s absence. It is to give a new verdict on October 8.
Thani was accused of repeated sexual contacts with school girls from 2000 until his detention in a Prague flat in 2004. Most of the girls came from broken families. Their education was largely neglected. They said at court in the past Thani paid them 2000 crowns for intercourse and they spent most of the money on clothing.
No valid verdict has been issued in the case of Thani, a member of the Qatari royal family because he was released to Qatar in August 2006 based on a ruling by former justice minister Pavel Nemec.
On his arrival back home, Thani was arrested, but he was released on bail after two days.
In 2007, a Qatar prosecutor stopped the prosecution and no charges were brought against Thani in his homeland. Qatar said Thani was already sufficiently punished with the 340-day custody in the Czech Republic and refused to deal with the case again.
The case has now been reopened because the Municipal Court in Prague abolished the original verdict in a closed hearing and returned it for appraisal by a different panel.
The relevant court could not do anything for a long time since Thani refused to arrive. But in summer, Thani sent a message from Qatar saying he agrees with proceedings to be held in his absence.
An international warrant for the arrest of Thani was issued in 2011, which means that he can be arrested if he leaves his homeland.
Thani was originally charged with paid sex with 15 girls, four of whom were underage and another eight were less than 18 years.
However, after former president Vaclav Klaus issued an amnesty in 2013, courts had to stop the criminal proceedings for six out of the total of 15 deeds because they started more than eight years ago.
The remaining cases are now being dealt with by the district court.
Three young women procured the girls for Thani in the street. All of them were previously given two-year suspended sentences.
($1=24.286 crowns)

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