Ex-BAE Lobbyist Charged With Money Laundering in Austria
A former BAE Systems Plc (BA/) lobbyist was charged in Austria with money laundering and perjury in relation to allegations he paid bribes to officials in eastern and central Europe for weapons contracts.
Alfons Mensdorff-Pouilly received 12.6 million euros that had been withdrawn from the London-based defense contractor through fake contracts, Thomas Vecsey, a spokesman for Austrian prosecutors said in a statement.
U.K. prosecutors dropped similar charges against Mensdorff- Pouilly in 2010 as part of a joint U.K. and U.S. settlement of a six-year-old bribery and fraud investigation against the company. Mensdorff’s lawyer, Harald Schuster, said the allegations are “old hat” and that his client is innocent.
The money Mensdorff-Pouilly received from the company was probably used to bribe decision makers in central and eastern Europe, prosecutors said in the statement. Mensdorff was also charged with giving false testimony to prosecutors and to a parliamentary investigation.
Leonie Foster, a spokeswoman for BAE Systems, said that the company had no comment.
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