Dolezel, Peta, and Rehulka are in custody

13-10-2006

A court in Prague 1 has sent all three men—Zdenek Dolezel, Ladislav Peta, and Miloslav Rehulka—accused of high-profile blackmail and corruption behind bars. Mr. Dolezel is the former head of the prime minister's office. The charges against Mr. Dolezel, Mr. Peta, mayor of the small south Moravian town of Budisov, and Mr. Rehulka, an Agriculture Ministry employee, were brought on Wednesday in connection with suspected corruption in the handling of EU structural funds channeled via the Local Development Ministry, and the blackmail of architect Marek Ricar who reported the planned fraud to the police. Both Mr. Dolezel and Mr. Rehulka have been taken into custody and transported to a holding cell, while Mr. Peta was taken to a hospital for medical attention; his lawyer told reporters that Mr. Peta has cancer, and was due to start treatment in hospital on Friday.