Party of Andrej Babiš, country’s second-richest man, is favourite to win election despite fraud charges and democracy fears

Czech Republic is poised to join Europe’s lurch towards anti-establishment populism by electing as its prime minister a controversial billionaire who faces criminal fraud charges and accusations of communist-era secret police links.

Andrej Babiš, 63, whose estimated $4.1bn (£3.1bn) fortune makes him the country’s second-richest man, could become the latest politician to drive a wedge between the continent’s east and west if he wins the parliamentary election this week.

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