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Finnish Prosecution Service has brought charges of aggravated bribery against Finnish state-owned defence industry group Patria

Published 28.6.2013

Former CEO and two other former employees of Patria Vehicles Oy, a subsidiary company of the Patria Group, will be facing charges of aggravated bribery in a case linked to the sale of Patria AMV -type armoured vehicles to the Republic of Croatia in 2007.

Finnish prosecutors, state prosecutor Jukka Rappe and district
prosec­utor Timo Kokkomäki, also demand for corporate fine against Patria Vehicles Oy, renamed Patria Land Services Oy.

The Finnish defendants are suspected to have participated in promising or giv­ing of bribes through intermediaries in exchange for actions of the pres­ident of the Republic of Croatia and the general manager of a Croatian state-owned company, who were considered to have leverage in the procurement procedure of the vehicles.

The suspects are alleged to have promised and partly paid out bribes amounting to 5 % of the selling price of the AMV-vehicles. In 2005 Patria Vehicles Oy offered AMV-vehicles to the Republic of Croatia at a price exceeding 350 million euro. In 2007 an agreement for purchase of a limited number of vehicles was concluded between Patria Vehicles Oy and the Republic of Croatia, Patria's share of the deal being more than 50 million euro.

Afterwads Patria Vehicles Oy paid out 1,5 million euro, part of the alleged bribes, to an intermediary in Austria. Further money transfers in Austria raised suspicion of money laundering and corruption, and a joint investigation was launched by Finnish, Austrian and Croatian authorities.

So far the joint investigation has resulted in criminal charges in Finland, but still continues in Austria and Croatia.

The Finnish prosecutors have filed an application for a summons at District Court of Kanta-Häme. The District Court is already hearing another case, where the same defendants are indicted for aggravated bribery. This case is connected to an AMV-purchase between Patria Vehicles Oy and the Republic of Slovenia.

All suspects have denied accusations against them.

The trial documents remain classified until the first hearing of the case or until the District Court rules separately about the publicity of the docu­ments.