Prague suburb fines PM Andrej Babiš for conflict of interest

The central Bohemian town of Černošice has fined Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš for breaching the conflict of interest law regarding his continued control over media via the Agrofert conglomerate he founded.

The Prague suburb where Babiš lives began the proceedings in 2019, following a request by Transparency International. The corruption watchdog asked Černošice to investigate whether Babiš still controlled the media companies Londa and Mafra via Agrofert, despite having placed it into two trusts.

Following an appeal by Babiš, the Central Bohemian Regional Council was commissioned to examine the case and later concluded that there was no evidence of his influence over his group.

Transparency International relaunched the case in January 2021, and last week Černošice announced it had reached a conclusion and imposed a 250,000 crowns fine, but did not explain its reasoning. The prime minister's lawyer said he would file another appeal.

Author: Brian Kenety