- Hans Weber
- November 29, 2023
Controversial Nomination: Senators Oppose Robert Fremr’s Addition to the Constitutional Court
Prague, Czech Republic – [Date]
The nomination of Robert Fremr, the deputy head of the Prague High Court, to the Constitutional Court has sparked controversy and opposition from Senators Marek Hilser and Hana Kordova Marvanova. In a personal letter addressed to President Petr Pavel, the two senators expressed their concerns, deeming Fremr’s addition to the Constitutional Court as inappropriate.
Their objections stem from historical records, which allegedly indicate that Fremr convicted over 100 people for attempting to emigrate between 1983 and 1985. Senators Hilser and Kordova Marvanova interpreted these convictions as participating in political cases. Hilser took to Twitter to voice his opposition, stating that Fremr should not be nominated for such a crucial position in the judiciary.
Despite the Senate’s approval of Fremr’s nomination, critics argue that his involvement in cases related to political emigration during the communist era raises questions about his suitability for the Constitutional Court. Senators have referred to the 1988 Olsany Cemetery case, in which the Communist secret police (StB) were allegedly involved in the prosecution. Fremr has denied any knowledge of the case or any intentional bias in deciding it based on the StB’s instructions. He also refuted the claim that he was a pro-regime judge during the communist era.
Senator Hilser asserted that Fremr had not been truthful when he claimed in the Senate that he did not convict anyone for political reasons during the totalitarian era. He further revealed that he received new information about Fremr from three different sources, which he considers credible. Based on this information, Hilser and Senator Kordova Marvanova wrote a personal letter to President Pavel, expressing their reservations about Fremr’s nomination.
The controversy comes at a critical time for the Constitutional Court, as there is a vacant post after Judge Vladimir Sladecek’s departure. His ten-year term ended on June 4. Additionally, the terms of office for Constitutional Court head Pavel Rychetsky and Ludvik David are set to end in early August. Fremr, along with Prague Municipal Court vice-chairwoman Veronika Krestanova and civil law professor Katerina Ronovska, whose nomination was approved by the Senate, are expected to fill these vacant positions.
The opposition by Senators Hilser and Kordova Marvanova raises concerns about the perception of justice in the country and highlights the significance of ensuring transparency and credibility in judicial appointments to the Constitutional Court. As the controversy unfolds, the nomination process remains under scrutiny, emphasizing the importance of upholding the integrity and independence of the judiciary.
Article by Prague Forum