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Court releases gang boss after 11 years in prison

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Prague, June 24 (CTK) – A Czech district court yesterday released on parole David Berdych, head of the “Berdych gang” who was sentenced to 15 years for robberies and kidnapping, after more than 11 years spent in prison.
However, the court ruled that Berdych must be supervised by the probation service for seven years.
Berdych should leave the Prague-Ruzyne prison around 15:00 yesterday.
Berdych has served more than two-thirds of the sentence. He was the last from the “Berdych gang” staying behind bars.
Berdych asked for release on parole last summer, but a district court judge rejected his request. However, the appels Prague Municipal Court returned the case to it for reappraisal.
The court required a psychiatric opinion on Berdych.
The case of the Berdych gang has been the largest organised crime case in the Czech Republic.
The gang was suspected of murders, robberies and blackmailing of rich entrepreneurs and attacks on lorries in 1995-2004. The culprits allegedly gained up to over 100 millions of crowns from criminal activities in which they abused police information and police equipment.
More than 50 people, including elite policemen, were accused or charged in the Berdych gang case. The charges concerned primarily robberies whose victims often suffered serious bodily harm, as well as abuse of public office and illegal possession of arms.
($1=24.266 crowns)

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