Nearly a year ago, notorious Czech art collective Ztohoven climbed on top of Prague Castle, removed the Castle flag, and erected a pair of giant red boxers in its place.
Yesterday, Prague 1’s District Court decided that the stunt was not a criminal act, reports Lidovky.cz.
Attending criminal proceedings wearing historical costumes and top hats, Ztohoven members Filip Crhák, Matěj Hájek and David Hons faced up to three years in prison for the crimes of theft and disorderly conduct.
But the District Court’s decision found that the prosecution did not prove the group’s actions were criminal. Prosecutors also sought nearly 400,000 CZK in damages.
“Looking at the seriousness of the act and its danger to society, I came to the conclusion that the requirements for criminal responsibility have not been met,” read a statement from judge Šárka Šantorová.
“As far as the presidential flag is concerned, they confess to having taken it down and dropping it. However, I believe they had no intent to financially benefit from it, to steal it, or to cause anyone damage.”
Authorities were not happy with the prank, which in part led to increased security measures at Prague Castle; recent weeks have seen queues of hundreds of people long.
They’re also not happy with this verdict, which was immediately appealed. The case will now head to Municipal Courts.