Hungarians jailed for sabotageing flood protection works

BUDAPEST, Apr 22, 2000 -- (AFP) Three received jail sentences Friday for hindering flood protection efforts in Hungary, where record water levels threaten thousands of homes, the MTI news agency said.

A court in the central city of Szolnok jailed one man for three and a half years because he punctured the tyre of a tractor building dykes around the village, threatened by flood waters, MTI said.

The man damaged the vehicle after a quarrel with its driver, it added.

The court also sentenced two men to six and 10 months in jail after they stole sandbags from a dyke along a tributary of the Tisza river. They wanted to use the bags for garbage collection, MTI said.

More than 32,000 Hungarians backed by foreign volunteers have been struggling to keep swollen rivers from bursting through saturated dykes for more than a week in the worst flooding on record in the country.

Original article