Dutch brothers sent to prison for fierce attack on Prague waiter; Prosecutor to press more severe charges
Two Dutch brothers accused of a vicious beating on a waiter in the Czech Republic were convicted in a Prague courtroom on Tuesday. The men were found guilty of assault and disturbing the peace, with Armin N. getting six years in prison and brother Arash getting five.
The prosecutor was pressing a case of attempted murder, demanding up to 18 years behind bars. The prosecution planned to appeal, their office said after the verdict was revealed.
The convicted men were also ordered to pay 75 thousand euros in restitution to the victim, Miroslav Vitek, who had asked the court for 100 thousand euros to cover damages for pain, suffering, and lost income. Vitek is also allowed to appeal the judgment.
The incident on April 21, 2018 at the Polpo restaurant left Vitek with a shattered eye socket, crushed ankle, broken jaw and a cerebral hemorrhage. He told newspaper Telegraaf that his body has rejected a titanium reinforcement plate in his skull, and he has undergone several operations over the last year to fix the injury.
It all started when the brothers, among a group of seven celebrating a bachelor party, were told they could not drink their own pre-purchased alcohol on the restaurant's property. The situation escalated, leading to a brawl between several of the partiers and several restaurant staffers.
The two brothers said Vitek fell before he joined the fight, which could have caused the damage to his head. Nevertheless, both suspects apologized for their actions. The court deemed Arash N.'s statement of regret as being more sincere, and gave him the reduced sentence for that reason.
The two have already been in custody for a year, which will count against the sentence. Arash N. could be eligible for early release around September 2021.
Armin N. could be released as early as April 2022.
The brothers from Den Haag were banned from entering the Czech Republic for ten years. They also have an opportunity to appeal the conviction and sentence.
An Amsterdam police officer was one of the group of seven Dutch men involved that day. They were all taken into custody at the airport in Prague. The police officer was released from custody early, along with another, when it was determined they tried to break up the fight and calm the situation. The three other Dutch suspects involved were given suspended eight-month sentences and were banned from the Czech Republic for five years.