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Prague insists on extradition of fugitive businessman Krejčíř

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Prague, March 20 (CTK) – The extradition of Czech fugitive businessman Radovan Krejcir from South Africa is in public interest, and this is why the Czech Justice Ministry still insists on it, the office told CTK on Tuesday.

It reacted to the question whether it was considering withdrawing the extradition request in view of Krejcir’s conviction in South Africa and his further prosecution abroad.

The Czech Republic has issued several international warrants for Krejcir’s arrest for crimes he committed in his homeland, the ministry pointed out.

Krejcir is serving a 35-year prison sentence for attempted murder, kidnapping and drug trafficking in South Africa, which was imposed on him in 2017.

Last Friday, a South African court ruled that Krejcir can be extradited to the Czech Republic. The decision has not taken effect yet. South African Justice Minister Michael Masutha will have the final say on his extradition,

Krejcir costs South Africa a lot due to strict security measures taken to prevent his escape from prison, at which he attempted a few times.

“The Czech Justice Ministry still seeks the extradition of Radovan Krejcir. Several international arrest warrants were issued on suspicion of criminal activities he committed in the territory of the Czech Republic before he escaped abroad, and this is why his extradition is in public interest,” Jakub Riman, from the Justice Ministry’s press section, said.

Krejcir escaped during a search of his luxury villa in Cernosice near Prague in 2005. He left tohgether with his wife and son for the Seychelles and later he moved to South Africa where he was taken into custody and tried on suspicion of serious crimes, including an attempted murder.

The Czech Republic has been seeking Krejcir’s extradition from South Africa since 2007.

In 2015, Krejcir was sentenced to 15 years for siphoning off assets from the state firm Cepro and the preparation of a customs officer’s murder by a Czech court. The sentence includes previous punishments for a tax evasion and other crimes of which he was convicted earlier in the past.

The verdict has not taken effect yet and the appeals High Court is to deal with it next week.

Krejcir can appeal a verdict on his extradition within two weeks with the South African Supreme Court.

After his extradition, Krejcir will have the right to ask Czech courts to proceed his cases again with him present.

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