District Court Bratislava 3 sent a suspected bank robber back to pre-trial custody on May 27 following his recapture on Monday night. For more than four months he had been on the run after giving a police escort the slip at a Kramáre hospital in Bratislava. Roman Červenka, 26, is facing charges of armed robbery. It is believed that it is his likeness – although masked – that was caught on closed-circuit camera in early January robbing a bank in the Bratislava borough of Rača, where he lives. His time as a fugitive ended on Monday when he accidentally rammed his car into a parked car at an intersection near his home. He attempted to flee but was caught running across surrounding gardens.
Červenka denies any connection to the robbery, during which he is said to have taken away Sk170,000 at gunpoint. A repeat offender, he faces life imprisonment under the three-strikes-and-you’re-out law in effect in Slovakia. Police told reporters on Tuesday, following an in-camera hearing, that Červenka's lawyer has appealed the decision to keep him in custody. The police officers who were escorting him when he escaped have since been dismissed from the force. They compounded their original mistake of letting him go to the toilet (which had an open window and was near ground floor) unaccompanied by waiting several hours before reporting his escape. TASR
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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28. May 2008 at 9:00