Babiš: Criminal prosecution? I’m not defending

Jan Handrejch

Former Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (ANO) said on Thursday that he does not oppose extradition for prosecution in the Čapí hnízdo case. He said he had done nothing illegal. He again described the trial as purposeful. The House is due to discuss the extradition request in the morning.

“Although this is a targeted prosecution, I do not oppose extradition on the merits. I can say with a clear conscience that I have done nothing illegal,” Babiš told journalists after a meeting of the ANO parliamentary club.

He added that he considers the case to be the work of a “post-Spado cartel” motivated by an effort to get him out of politics.

The Čapí hnízdo subsidy case is currently continuing for a third term. The Chamber of Deputies has twice handed Babiš over for prosecution, and the Mandate and Immunity Committee has recommended his extradition to the plenary.

Although Babiš urged MPs to extradite him for the prosecution during the last term when he was head of government, he recently wrote to them asking them to consider the decision carefully. He has now done so again, in a slight U-turn.

However, the coalition majority is expected to hand Babiš over for prosecution. However, behind-the-scenes information, the ANO movement does not plan to obstruct the hearing itself. Only a few of the 72 ANO MPs will take the podium next to Babiš.