CZECH REPUBLIC | Police close neo-nazi e-shop
Source: Prague Daily Monitor Thursday, 13 December 2012, 13:17
The Czech police have uncovered an Internet shop selling neo-Nazi and Nazi paraphernalia and seized over 2,000 CDs, T-shirts, sweatshirts and other goods the two brothers who run the shop were also selling abroad, local police told journalists yesterday.
If convicted, the brothers can be sentenced up to ten years in prison, the police said.
The police were working on the case for roughly a year and the criminal investigation of the men, aged 30 and 33, was started in October.
"They ran the Internet shop from 2009. They offered and sold various objects with motives evaluated as socially harmful," local senior police Jiri Volprecht said.
A court expert assessed over 2,000 items seized in home searches, having concluded that about 70 percent of them were objectionable.
Investigator Stepan Vaclavik said the men from Most had not offered the neo-Nazi paraphernalia right in the shop.
"They checked every customer and only sold the most harmful objects to thoroughly checked individuals," Vaclavik said, adding that they also had some dealers who were buying the goods and then resold them at various events such as neo-Nazi concerts.
The police will bring the charges against them in the first quarter of next year and the court expert is still assessing the seized computers and discs, Volprecht said.
"I think that the case may be taken up by a court within six months after the charge is filed," Volprecht said.
The criminal act of establishment, support to and propaganda of a movement suppressing human rights and freedoms is punishable with up to five years in prison.
However, as the men used the Internet for their crime, the punishment is raised to three to ten years in prison.
The case was serious as evidenced by their having stayed in custody during the first three months of the investigation, Volprecht said.
The police also investigated the companies that delivered the cloth printing.
However, they are of the view that a layman may not recognise that the themes are objectionable.
Some of the T-shirts feature the portrait of a current neo-Nazi leader and the pictures of Nazi representatives.
The police are also checking the recipients of the delivered goods.