Television channel will admit to staging scenes in ‘exposé’ on city’s criminal goings-on
Prague, July 23 (ČTK) — Prague has settled its long-running dispute with the National Geographic company (NG) about crime in Prague in its Scam City program, a well-informed source from the city’s management told the Czech News Agency (ČTK) today.
Both sides are to sign an agreement in which NG will pledge not to further spread the documentary that harms the Czech capital’s reputation.
The National Geographic TV channel broadcast the report about Prague in December 2012.
The Prague authority criticized it as manipulative, pointing out that the scenes were shot with actors and did not reflect reality.
“The discussion with National Geographic has been completed. The City Council will deal with the result Tuesday,” Prague councilor Lukáš Manhart (TOP 09) told ČTK without elaborating.
According to ČTK sources, NG is to admit in the agreement that some scenes in the report were staged, but it will not publish an apology, which Prague originally demanded.
The negotiations between both sides lasted almost nine months.
In the NG documentary, moderator Conor Woodman describes Prague as a city full of scams.
Prague claims that the report has harmed its good name. It shows several situations where tourists were cheated out of money in the Prague city center, for instance in an erotic club that provided no services, by a fraudulent taxi driver and by a dealer of fake drugs.
However, Prague detectives have found that the documentary was shot with hired actors in a club that had closed a long time ago, and with a taxi operator that had declared bankruptcy.
The documentary, shot by the British Zig Zag Productions in December 2011, premiered in the Czech Republic Nov. 2, 2012.
The National Geographic Channel broadcasts in 171 countries. The National Geographic Channels International company operates, among others, the Nat Geo Wild, Nat Geo Adventure and Nat Geo Music channels.