The Press: The Kangaroo Court

Under Nazi rule, the Germans used the great hall of Pankrac Prison in Prague as a combination courtroom and execution chamber. Last week into Pankrac's great hall the Czech Communist government brought its own victim: Associated Press Correspondent William N. Oatis, who was arrested by Czech police nearly three months ago (TIME, May 7). He was charged with "espionage" and "activities hostile to the state." But his real crime was reporting the news.

As he stood up before the five-judge court, Bill Oatis (6 ft., 120 Ibs.) looked even frailer than usual. His glasses were gone, even though he can barely see...

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