Court upholds acquittal of former defense minister charged with asking US ambassador for bribe

Associated Press

A Prague appeals court has upheld a lower court verdict to acquit a former defense minister of soliciting a bribe.

Martin Bartak was charged after former U.S. ambassador William Cabaniss accused him of asking for a bribe.

Continue Reading Below

Prague's Municipal Court ruled in May there was insufficient evidence, and the High Court confirmed that decision on Wednesday. Bartak has denied wrongdoing.

Cabaniss accused Bartak of asking for $5 million in 2008 to solve a problem with a supplier that threatened a $150 million deal for Czech truck-maker Tatra AS.

Cabaniss, who was chairman of Tatra's supervisory board, was the U.S. ambassador to Prague from 2003 to 2006. He accused Bartak in 2010.