Parents prosecuted for forcing girl to join religious group
30 April 2009
Zlin, South Moravia, April 29 (CTK) - A Czech couple is prosecuted for oppressing their 18-year-old daughter for her refusal to join the religious society of which they are members, the Zlin police told CTK Wednesday.
The parents reportedly urged the girl, a secondary school student, to join the Jehova's Witnesses grouping. After she refused to do so, they expelled her from home.
If found guilty they face up to six months in prison.
The parents left the girl without financial means. They told her she may return home only on condition she joins Jehova's Witnesses.
"The daughter has already come of age, but she does not yet work to earn her living, therefore the parents are still obliged to support her," police spokeswoman Jana Bartikova said.
She said the crime of oppression, when a perpetrator abuses the someone else's dependence or emergency situation to force him/her to do something, occurs only rarely in the Zlin region.
Jehova's Witnesses present themselves as genuine Christians.
The Christian churches generally consider Jehova's Witnesses a sect, oppose their interpretation of the Bible and criticise their totalitarian organisation and ways to spread their views.
Headline: CzechRep extends ways to punish unlawful steps by distrainersDate released: 29.4. 2009Time released: 10:37Key words: Czech; Chamber; law; distraint; PHOTOID: T200904290245201Service: ccePriority: 3Category: eng
CzechRep extends ways to punish unlawful steps by distrainers
Prague, April 29 (CTK) - The Czech state will have more chances to punish the Distrainers' Chamber for steps contradicting the law, under the amendment to the Distraint Order that the lower house passed in a shortened procedure Wednesday.
The law empowers the Justice Ministry to suspend the Distrainers Chamber's decisions which it would suspect of contradicting law.
Afterwards it would be up to a court to decide whether the discrepancy really exists and possibly to abolish the Distrainers Chamber's decision.
The law also reinforces the supervision of distrainers' work. The supervision is no longer the task for the Justice Ministry only, but also for court chairmen.
The ministry, which initiated the amendment, says local courts have the best information about the performance of individual distrainers in the respective localities.
Before the vote Wednesday, outgoing Justice Minister Jiri Pospisil told deputies that the amendment provides instruments for solving problems that have recently arisen around the Distrainers' Chamber.
It is meant as prevention, not witch-hunt, Pospisil said.
The draft amendment was supported by 151 lawmakers. No one voted against it.
Pospisil said the Distrainers' Chamber breached the ministerial directive by failing to launch a central registry of distraints in December.
However, a gap in legislation has made the ministry unable to force the chamber into observing the legal requirements.
The newly passed amendment enables to impose fines of up to 10 million crowns.
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