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Baffled by Czech list - burgled speedway fan in plea for translator
A KEEN speedway fan who had more than £500 stolen while following riders from the Swindon Robins to the World Cup this year has been left baffled by court papers written in Czech.
Simon May, 34, of Shrivenham Road, was in Prague in July with nine-year-old son Jake when he was the victim of a spate of burglaries at the Hotel Cerny Slon.
Having given a police statement he heard nothing back from the authorities until he was sent a wad of official documents, all in a foreign tongue.
Simon is worried he may have been summoned to court, and is appealing for anyone who can help him translate the papers.
“We went to Prague in July of this year for the World Cup,” he said.
“We flew out on the Tuesday ahead of the final on the Saturday. But on the Thursday morning our hotel room was burgled along with nine others.
“We got up in the morning. I picked the key up, and we went downstairs for breakfast.
“We were only down there for about 10 or 15 minutes, and when we got back to the room I noticed my phone was not where I had left it. We went back down to reception and asked them to phone my mobile while we were back in the room. When we came back down again there were a couple of other people who were saying they had been burgled.
“They took about £500 in Czech koruna as well as my phone.
“The police were called and we went down to the police station for three hours. I made a statement to an English-speaking interpreter, but it was taken down in Czech.
“The interpreter said at the time I might have to come back to go to court.”
Simon received the letters on Tuesday, and has been trying to find anyone who can help.
“There is a date on them for 21 January 2014, but I can’t make anything else out,” he said. “There are five or six A4 pages, and I can’t make any sense of it.
“I was walking around town all the next day trying to find someone who could help. I went to the police station and Citizens Advice. They could not help. Then I went to the courts, but I have been told to go to Interpol, which is in France.
“The thing that scares me is the person I spoke to in the courts said in some countries if you are called as a witness and you do not turn up you could get a fine.
“We are planning to go back to Prague this year as well, and if I don’t turn up to a court hearing I am supposed to be at I could get arrested when I get into the country or slapped with a fine.
“I do not know anyone who can translate it. I phoned the police station in Prague and asked them if they had anyone who could speak English, and they didn’t.”
Simon and Jake have been going to Prague for the last three years. “This hasn’t put me off,” said Simon.
“It did put a bit of a downer on the holiday. The money that was stolen put us right down on our funds for the rest of the trip, and we were not able to take any decent photos.”
If you can help Simon contact the Adver newsroom on 01793 501806 or newsdesk@swindon advertiser.co.uk.
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