A little greasing of the wheels can get any motorist out of a traffic ticket in the Czech Republic, or so the urban legend goes.
But this story might ward you off of such notions.
Over the past year, Prague Police recorded 18 instances of bribery attempts to get out of a ticket or other offense. More than half of the cases were reported during traffic stops during which the driver was under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
In one such case, a foreigner temporarily living in the Czech Republic set a new record with the amount of the bribe offered to police officers.
During a traffic stop in July, police officers detained a 27-year-old foreigner on suspicion of driving under the influence of cocaine.
Seeking to sweep the matter under the carpet, the unidentified man attempted to appeal to officers with a series of bribes. Eventually, he settled on a whopping sum of 150,000 CZK, a new record according to Prague Police.
“The man offered a bribe to officers of the Foreign Police in the amount of 30 thousand crowns, and gradually raised his offer up to the amount of 150 thousand crowns,” said police spokesperson Andrea Zoulová, as reported in Blesk.
That’s about 4-5 times the average monthly salary of a police officer in the Czech capital.
The princely sum was proffered because the man had already been expelled from the country by the Foreigner’s Police, and was undergoing administrative proceedings at the time. An arrest for driving under the influence of cocaine would not help his case.
But, now, he might get the chance to stay in the country a bit longer: the bribery charge comes with a sentence of up to six years in prison.