Followers of the teachings of guru Jaroslav Dobeš failed in their attempt to register a religious society called the Path of Guru Jára in the Czech Republic. The Supreme Administrative Court rejected their cassation appeal against the judgment of the Municipal Court in Prague, which confirmed the dissenting opinion of the Ministry of Culture last year. The office and the courts came to the conclusion that it does not meet the conditions for the establishment and operation of churches in the Czech Republic.
Dobeš and his colleague Barbora Plášková were convicted in absentia in the Czech Republic for the rape of several female students of an unaccredited esoteric school. According to the verdict, Dobeš committed the rape with the help of Plášková. They are to serve 5.5 years and five years respectively in prison. However, the Czech police still have them among the wanted persons. They lived in the Philippines, where they applied for religious asylum.
According to the last available decision in the criminal line of the case issued by the Supreme Court, Dobeš and Plášková were in Philippine extradition custody last year. They filed constitutional complaints against the latest verdict, which, according to the Constitutional Court database, have not yet been decided.
The Ministry of Culture rejected the registration of Dobeš’s religious society in 2017 for several reasons. First, it found inconsistencies in the supporting petition sheets, then argued that the group had incited hatred and intolerance against some of its former members, and that, according to its founding document, Guru Jara’s Path provides most of its spiritual services for a fee, which the ministry said contravened the Act on churches.
The trio of people who appealed to the Supreme Administrative Court argued, for example, that the Path of Guru Jara had been registered abroad, specifically in the United States and the Philippines. According to the court, however, this does not change the situation.
“If a religious society seeks registration in the Czech Republic, it is up to the competent administrative authority to assess such a proposal in accordance with national effective legislation, while registration decisions issued by other states do not bind it in any way,” the judgment reads. The Supreme Administrative Court did not find any other reason to intervene and change the decision of the Ministry of Culture.
According to the final verdict of the criminal court, Dobeš so-called unhooked women at various seminars. He claimed that all their problems were caused by the hooks left in them by their former sexual partners. Dobeš allegedly loosened these hooks during sexual intercourse with women. According to the verdict, Plášková made them defenseless and Dobeš performed intercourse on them. Some women then developed post-traumatic stress disorder.
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