Last April 24, more than two dozen masked police commandos surrounded the Black Eagle, a restaurant in Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic. Inside, globetrotting white supremacist David Duke was chatting with about 10 supporters.
Last April 24, more than two dozen masked police commandos surrounded the Black Eagle, a restaurant in Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic. Inside, globetrotting white supremacist David Duke was chatting with about 10 supporters. The conversation was cut short when the commandos charged in and arrested Duke, who'd arrived in the country earlier that day, on suspicion of denying the Holocaust and promoting the neo-Nazi movement, crimes punishable by up to three years in prison in the Czech Republic.
Duke was in the country at the invitation of the Czech radical-right organization National Resistance. He was scheduled to deliver lectures in Prague and Brno. Less than 24 hours after he was arrested, however, he was expelled from the country.
On his personal website, Duke thanked hundreds of right-wing extremists who demonstrated in support of him in a northern Czech town the day after he was arrested. He also flatly denied that he'd traveled to the Czech Republic to deny the Holocaust or to promote neo-Nazism.
"I was going to lecture about the Israeli influence over American and European foreign policy and the International Zionist Banking firms that are leading America and the world to financial oblivion, globalist hegemony and unending war," he wrote.
The following week, Czech state attorneys announced that Duke would be prosecuted in absentia. National Resistance organizer Filip Vavra told the Czech media that Duke hoped to return to Prague for the trial. "He is determined to defend himself before Czech authorities if he is permitted to enter the country," Vavra said.
Duke could simply hop on a EuroRail train, according to The Daily Telegraph. Three weeks after Duke's arrest in Prague, the British newspaper revealed that Duke is living in a rented house on a lake near Salzburg, Austria, and that he's working as a birdwatching guide in the Austrian Alps. (Duke is also known to keep an apartment in Moscow, and he has frequently visited northern Italy and the Ukraine, among other European locales. His home base is in Louisiana.)
"I have it on good information that he has lived there for four or five years," local Green Party official Karl Oellinger was quoted as saying. "The Austrian police have known he's been here all along. Apparently, he can live here unchallenged as he travels to other countries to help the far-right movement."