Czech MPs consider changing criminal code, scrapping immunity


12.02.2014 15:46

Prague - Jeronym Tejc (Social Democrats, CSSD), chairman of the Chamber of Deputies constitutional-legal committee, said today he would like the criminal code to be changed and clear rules of the investigation and supervision of criminal cases set, in reaction to the accusation of Petr Necas.


Jeroným Tejc, poslanec ČSSD, šéf ústavně právního výboru Sněmovny. ČTK Šálek Václav, ČTK

Necas, former prime minister and Civic Democrats (ODS) chairman, was accused on Tuesday of having bribed three deputies Petr Tluchor, Marek Snajdr and Ivan Fuksa into resigning as ODS deputies in late 2012 in exchange for lucrative posts in state-owned companies to enable the passage of a crucial legislation they opposed.

Stanislav Polcak (TOP 09) said the accusation of Necas was surprising and added that he would like deputies´ immunity to be abolished.

Tejc said the CSSD has long pointed to the absence of clear rules stating "who investigates a specific case, who supervises a specific case so that jurisdiction may not be expediently changed."

Tejc said, however, he doubts the issue could be resolved with a constitutional complaint that the ODS is considering submitting.

The ODS said it believes that not the Olomouc state attorney´s office, but Prague is competent to supervise the investigation into Necas´s case.

They said the investigation in Olomouc, north Moravia, was made possible by a decree that Marie Benesova, who was justice minister in the previous caretaker government, submitted to the government.

That is why the party will demand that the new minister abolish it, the ODS said.

Polcak said the decision to accuse Necas will influence lawmakers´ behaviour and that he will propose that lawmakers´ immunity be abolished at the end of February.

Pavel Belobradek, chairman of the government Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL), said he is opposed to the abolition of immunity.

He said it should protect lawmakers from pressure being exerted on them. The pressure may have the form of a criminal complaint, for instance, he told CTK.

Belobradek said Necas´s case must be decided by law enforcement bodies and that their and courts´ independence must be respected.

Belobradek said the matter is very precarious because it may result in politicians being reluctant to make any decision out of fear of being sent to prison.

Communists (KSCM) deputy group chairman Pavel Kovacik said his party believes the law enforcement bodies will act in line with law.

He said immunity should only apply to speeches made in connection with the deputy´s mandate and its exercise.

Necas dismisses the accusation and says it is an act of revenge for a criminal complaint he had filed against Robert Slachta, chief of the police unit fighting organised crime.

Necas´s case resulted in the fall of his government last June and he also resigned as ODS chairman.

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