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Court halts proceedings against communist prosecutor

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Prague, Aug 17 (CTK) – A Prague court has halted the criminal proceedings against Tomas Liptak, 87, former communist prosecutor suspected of abuse of power during the farming collectivisation process in the early 1950s, CTK has found out in the database of the court verdicts.
The court spokesman Michal Dvorak confirmed the decision but said the reasons for the verdict can be released only after the decision on the halt of the proceedings is received by all parties to the dispute.
The verdict can still be appealed.
Liptak is suspected of assisting in the intimidation of private farmers and their forced resettlement in Kralupy nad Vltavou, central Bohemia, in 1953. He was a member of a commission that decided on the unlawful resettlement of several private farmers’ families.
He could face up to 10 years in prison, if found guilty.
Criminal charges against Liptak were levelled only this May, 62 years after the suspected crime was committed.
The charges could be levelled after so a long period because the crimes of communism are not subject to the statute of limitations.
Czech judiciary has been dealing with the case for a long time.
First, the state attorney’s office in Melnik, central Bohemia, halted the prosecution of Liptak in 2013. However, Supreme State Attorney Pavel Zeman cancelled the decision and the prosecution continued.
After the charges were brought against Liptak in May, daily Mlada fronta Dnes (MfD) wrote that he pleads not guilty and complains about his poor health condition.
State attorneys, nevertheless, believe that he is capable of turning up in court, MfD wrote.
The communist regime was resettling private farmers together with their families from 1951 to 1954, moving them mostly to selected farms in areas remote from their home, where they lived under supervision and could not leave the place. Their property was confiscated by the state.
The resettlement verdicts were made by special local commissions.
The number of families that were resettled is estimated at up to 4,000.
The campaign, aimed to do away with the private farmer status, seriously impaired the traditional village communities.

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