Mol Heads for Two-Month Low on Croatian Verdict: Budapest Mover

Mol Nyrt. (MOL) headed for the lowest in more than two months after a Croatian court found former Prime Minister Ivo Sanader guilty of taking bribes from Hungary’s largest refiner, a charge that both parties denied.

The shares fell 2.9 percent to 17,550 forint by 12:12 p.m. in Budapest, the lowest on a closing basis since Sept. 13. The benchmark BUX stock index, in which Mol has the biggest weighting at 33 percent, dropped 1.2 percent.

Judge Ivan Turudic in Zagreb sentenced Sanader to 10 years in prison after he was found guilty of offenses including taking a bribe from Mol between 2008 to 2009, when he was premier. In exchange, he arranged with a “highly positioned” Mol manager to give the Hungarian company controlling rights over INA Industrija Nafte d.d. in a January 2009 shareholding agreement, Judge Turudic said.

Sanader has maintained his innocence and can appeal the verdict. Mol “categorically rejects” the accusations, which formed part of a “political case” lacking any evidence, crime or motive, the company said in a statement on its website today. Mol regards the outcome of the court case as “preliminary,” it said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Andras Gergely in Budapest at agergely@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Gavin Serkin at gserkin@bloomberg.net

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