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He was born in Frenštát pod Radhoštěm. He studied philosophy at the Charles University in Prague and then in Berlin. In 1923 he joined the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia, but he was expelled due to his criticism of Stalin's policy.
He was arrested by the Gestapo in 1939 and imprisoned until 1945 in various concentration camps. After the war he was branded as a Trotskyist and accused of being the member of a supposed plot to overthrow the Communist regime. He was sentenced to death along with his co-defendants, Milada Horáková, Jan Buchal and Oldřich Pecl, on 8 June 1950, and executed.
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