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Around Slovakia

Cross-dressing robber
Cats and dogs in harmony
The fall of Babylon
No money, no credit
Gun-happy teacher in court
Expat killer returned
Machete maniac jailed
Bombing his courses
Bloody beauty queen

Trenčín
Cross-dressing robber

TRENČÍN police are after a thief who specialises in stealing women's underwear.
Over the last week, police said, the unknown robber broke into two private houses in town. In the first case he took several pieces of underwear and Sk7,000 ($145) while the woman was home alone sleeping.
In the second case he broke into a house through an open window and took four bras, ten pairs of underwear, six pairs of nylon stockings, five petticoats and two scarves.


Lučenec
Cats and dogs in harmony

KAROL Berta, a 47-year-old animal lover from this southern Slovak town, uses his house as an animal shelter for 14 dogs and 25 cats.
He started the shelter in 1990 when neighbours wanted to kill their aggressive dog Ťapko. Today the 14-year-old Ťapko is the oldest dog in the yard and is in good shape, Berta says.
Berta, who is a former regional head of the Animal Freedom organisation, says he gives a home to animals which the official local shelter refuses to accept because of their bad condition.
His four-legged friends eat eight kilos of rice and meat a day.


Dubnica nad Váhom
The fall of Babylon

BABYLON, a tower atop a 17th century building in this northern Slovak town, has collapsed, due probably to recent dramatic weather changes.
The tower disintegrated February 26, and local officials say the rest of the city's few historical buildings may soon go too.
While some locals say the building should be flattened before people get hurt by other tumbling masonry, culture preservation experts say the stability of the building should be assessed first.
Deputy mayor Anton Ladecký thinks that the city, which owns the building, will not have enough money to fix it, and says that if preservation experts insist the building be reconstructed, Dubnica nad Váhom will ask for state funding.


Nitra
No money, no credit

A PROFESSOR with the Slovak Agricultural University in Nitra was arrested after he accepted a bribe of Sk5,000 from one of his students.
The student said her professor had demanded the money when she stopped by to ask when she could collect a credit for a course he lectured. The student claimed he first asked for Sk10,000 but she was able to bargain the price after she told him she came from a poor family.
The student told university officials and they immediately contacted the police. The 40-year-old teacher no longer lectures at the university.


Nitra
Gun-happy teacher in court

THE TRIAL of a secondary school teacher charged with attempted murder and illegal possession of arms has begun in Nitra Regional Court.
The teacher, Mária M., got into a row with a man whose car was parked in front of her garage, and asked some friends to help push the car out of the way.
The owner of the car later verbally attacked the couple and, Mária M. claimed, "threatened to kill us and blow up our house".
Mária M.'s husband slapped the man, and a fight started after the angry car owner's friend came to help him out. The teacher claimed the pair kicked her husband to the ground and beat him severely. She therefore took out her husband's 5.6 millimetre gun and shot 17-year-old Marián Jašík in the back.
Jašík is requesting Sk1 million in compensation from Mária M.


Komárno
Expat killer returned

A PORTUGUESE man who last year killed his Slovak girlfriend was arrested in Madrid, Spain and transported to Slovakia.
The 24-year-old had been under an international warrant since the end of last year.
The murder took place overnight from October 18 to 19 in Komárno's Panoráma hotel. The man first attacked his 31-year-old girlfriend, and after discovering she was dead hid her body under the bed and left the hotel.
He was taken into custody and faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.


Rožňavská Baňa
Machete maniac jailed

ŠTEFAN Boldi, who after a bar fight cut off half of his opponent's skull with a machete, was sentenced to seven years in jail by Košice regional court.
The 22-year-old Boldi caused several other injuries to the man who, despite severe wounds to his head, back and chest, managed to survive the attack.


Horná Streda
Bombing his courses

A THIRTEEN-year-old boy from an elementary school called police and said there was a bomb inside the school.
Early morning lessons were cancelled and police searched the building, finding no explosives. But they did discover the identity of the caller who, however, will not be punished due to his young age.


Drahovce
Bloody beauty queen

A NEW beauty queen has won her title after giving blood twice to save other people's lives.
Nineteen-year-old Eva Hešková was crowned Miss Humanitarian Beauty in the town of Drahovce over the weekend after judges heard how she gave blood at local hospitals.
Judges said that Hešková had all the attributes a normal beauty queen would have but that her donations had swayed their decision.
All competitors in the unusual beauty contest had to have given blood at some time in the past.

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