Justice minister denies drafting controversial amnesty

Justice Minister Pavel Blažek has vehemently denied allegations that his ministry authored the controversial amnesty declared at the start of the year by then president Václav Klaus. The allegations came from Mr Klaus’ former legal advisor, Pavel Hasenkopf, who said the ministry had prepared a detailed draft of the amnesty with two goals in mind: alleviating the country’s overcrowded prisons and ridding the justice system of old cases. Minister Blažek said this was an outright lie, adding that he was considering legal action in the ministry’s defence. President Klaus’ controversial amnesty among others halted the prosecution of cases lasting for more than eight years including some high-profile corruption cases from the 1990s.