Former political prisoner Josef Plocek dies aged 94 |

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Former political prisoner Josef Plocek dies aged 94

Former political prisoner Josef Plocek dies aged 94

Former Czech political prisoner Josef Plocek, who resisted both the Nazi and Communist totalitarian regimes, has died at the age of 94 years, Prague Assembly member Jan Wolf (Christian Democrats, KDU-CSL) announced on Facebook yesterday.

Plocek received the Order of Tomas Garrigue Masaryk for his contribution to the development of democracy, humanity and human rights from then president Vaclav Klaus in 2012.

"Our dear brother, a lifelong member of the People's Party (CSL), a political prisoner from the 1950s and a citizen of Prague 1, doctor of law Josef Plocek, departed to God a few days ago," Wolf wrote.

Plocek's funeral will take place at the cemetery in Prague-Dablice next Wednesday, Wolf added.

Plocek, born in Prague on March 8, 1925, was expelled from a grammar school during the Nazi occupation of the Czech Lands, among others for his membership of the Orel (Eagle) sports organisation.

In August 1951, a Communist court sentenced him to 13 years in prison as a "Vatican spy" in a show trial for having assisted in sending a letter about the situation of the religious and church life in Czechoslovakia to the Vatican.

Plocek spent nine year in forced-labour camps, including uranium mines. He was released in 1960 on the basis of a presidential amnesty.

Then he was persecuted and forced to live under a constant supervision of the Communist secret police (StB). He could only do manual labour. Later, he became a lawyer at the Prague Archbishopric.

In 1988, Plocek published a study on the relation between the church and state in samizdat. He was an active member of the Confederation of Political Prisoners and the Church Law Society.

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