Final Word from Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Sometimes it's better to honor - or dishonor - someone for something before it happens. This is why ex-Health Min. David Rath of ČSSD is our Person of the Year. He hasn't yet been cleared in one of the CR's biggest corruption cases - known in shorthand as "Kč 7m in a wine box" - but just you wait, he will be. Rath was originally sentenced to 8.5 years in prison, but the turning point came when Radek Pokorný met with Jaroslav Bureš. A short time later, Bureš's Prague Superior Court struck down the prison sentence and ordered another trial. The legal trick used to achieve this was apparently an invented issue of jurisdiction. How did Rath, once left by his own party to rot in jail, achieve this? And why does it make him Person of the Year? Those in the know say that Rath threatened to become a "rat" by revealing how ČSSD's party financing really works. For those who care to notice, Rath is already revealing how the Czech justice system really works. [Czech Rail prison bribery lawyer]

Glossary of difficult words

shorthand - a short and simple way of expressing or referring to something;

just you wait (and see) - you will see that what you are being told will turn out to be true eventually;

jurisdiction - the territory or sphere of activity over which the legal authority of a court or other institution extends;

to rot in jail, prison, etc. - to stay in prison for a very long time;

rat - an informer.

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