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Court fines hockey coach Růžička for embezzlement

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Prague, Sept 27 (CTK) – A Prague court imposed on Tuesday a fine of 400,000 crowns on Czech hockey coach Vladimir Ruzicka for the embezzlement of 500,000 designated for the Slavia Praha club, and if failed to pay, he would go to prison for 16 months.

The verdict is not yet valid.

Ruzicka, who faced up to five years in prison and who resigned was the national team’s coach, dismisses any wrongdoing.

According to the indictment, Ruzicka took over sponsorship gifts from businessman Miroslav Palascak at the Eden winter stadium in Prague in the spring of 2012 and in May 2013, which were worth 250,000 crowns each time.

He allegedly did not intentionally hand the money to the club, kept it for himself and used it as if it was his own.

Ruzicka only returned it when explicitly asked by Palascak in November 2014, when he no longer stayed with Slavia, from his wife’s account.

Ruzicka, currently coach of the Ice Hockey Extraleague club of Chomutov, admits that he accepted the money. He says it was not included in the club’s accounting because Palascak was to hand to him the necessary documents on the amount, which he did not do, however.

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