Criminal investigators have until the end of August to supplement the criminal case with evidence in the Stork’s Nest case. They were originally supposed to be ready by the end of June, but they asked for more time and the supervising public prosecutor Jaroslav Šaroch complied with their request, irozhlas.cz wrote on Thursday. However, even the new date may not be final.
In the Stork’s Nest case, the prime minister is accused of subsidy fraud Andrej Babiš (YEAR) and his former adviser Jana Mayerová. Last August, Saroch stopped the prosecution of all the accused, including Babiš and his family. After a review, the Attorney General Pavel Zeman resumed the prosecution of Babiš and Mayerová in December, according to him the proceedings were stopped illegally and prematurely. He therefore ordered the case to be investigated. On the contrary, he confirmed that the prosecution of Babiš’s loved ones was definitively stopped.
“The deadline for the end of the investigation is set at the end of August,” he told the server irozhlas.cz spokesman of the Municipal Public Prosecutor’s Office in Prague Aleš Cimbala. The work related to the completion of the investigation continues and, according to him, it is not possible to say now how much time it will take. “The deadline can be extended repeatedly, if necessary in view of the state of the investigation,” Cimbala added.
There is no legal deadline for completing the investigation. However, any request for a delay must always be conditioned by the need for action, stressed Prague’s chief prosecutor Lenka Bradáčová in a recent statement on Czech Television.
The essence of the case is that the company Farma Čapí hnízdo originally belonged to Babiš’s holding Agrofert. In December 2007, it was transformed into a joint-stock company with bearer shares and later received a European grant in the SME program, to which it would not be entitled as part of Agrofert. After a few years, the company returned to Agrofert.
Zeman stated in the justification of his verdict that it is necessary to evaluate more thoroughly European legislation and related case law, as well as the issue of fault of Babiš and Mayerová, who signed the application for a subsidy for the Stork’s Nest Farm.
Video: The Attorney General resumed the prosecution of Andrej Babiš
The Attorney General resumed the prosecution of Prime Minister A. Babiš. | Video: CTK