One of the men who were granted amnesty in Slovakia broke into a flat in Trnava only a few hours after he was released on Wednesday, January 2. The Sme daily wrote in its Friday, January 4, issue that he forcibly entered the flat where his ex-wife lives, threatening her and her boyfriend, and was detained shortly afterwards. Another amnestied man was caught stealing in a shopping centre, Sme wrote.

A total of 753 convicts have been pardoned following Ivan Gasparovic's amnesty on Tuesday, the TASR newswire learnt from Justice Ministry spokesperson Jana Zlatohlávková. Slovak President Ivan Gašparovič granted amnesty in connection with the 20th anniversary of the split of Czechoslovakia and the establishment of independent Slovak Republic.

According to Zlatohlávková, over 60 judges across Slovakia on Wednesday were involved in deciding on the eligibility of individual prisoners for freedom. There were a total of 10,862 prisoners in Slovak jails on Wednesday, with 9,559 serving post-trial sentences. Convicts in the lowest-security penitentiaries - 5,160 individuals - accounted for the largest share of the total, with 1,198 of them serving sentences of less than 18 months. More than half of the final group have been released thanks to Gašparovič's amnesty. According to the president's decision, the amnesty didn't apply to those sentenced for the following crimes: those resulting in death, grievous bodily harm or large-scale damage; those that involved neglect of children or threatened an ethical upbringing for young people; drug-trafficking; serving alcoholic beverages to adolescents; and crimes committed under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Those granted amnesties will be treated as if they had never been convicted.

(Source: Sme, TASR)
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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