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Prison head arrested over suspected corruption

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Prague, Aug 17 (CTK) – The Czech General Inspection of Security Forces (GIBS) arrested the head of Litomerice custody prison, northern Bohemia, and former Prison Service economic deputy director Tomas Libal over suspected corruption yesterday, the Prison Service has confirmed to CTK.
The Prison Service said Libal tried to blackmail and bribe its director Pavel Ondrasek.
This has been the most serious case of corruption in the Prison Service since the fall of the communist regime in 1989, it added.
Ondrasek said he faced blackmail and strong pressure to return the former management of the Prison Service to their posts and that he was offered several millions of crowns if he did so.
“I was surprised by the extent of the case,” he said.
Ondrasek said he became unwanted by certain interest groups and politicians when he declared that he would check all public orders of the Prison Service and make the new tenders more transparent after he was appointed its director.
Ondrasek did not give any names in connection with the suspected crimes.
The Prison Service said further information on the case will not be provided due to the ongoing investigation.
GIBS spokeswoman Radka Sandorova did not comment on the investigation.
Justice Minister Robert Pelikan (for ANO) said he would insist that the suspected corruption be investigated as soon as possible.
He said suspicions related to contracts for the Prison Service appeared already before.
“If funds were illegally drawn from the Prison Service, we will apply all instruments available to regain them,” Pelikan said.
The corruption is said to concern public orders signed under Ondrasek’s predecessor, Petr Dohnal.
Libal ended in the post of Prison Service deputy director for economic affairs one year ago.

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