Former Siemens AG executive Uriel Sharef asked a court to drop bribery charges against him, arguing that prosecutors failed to submit a “truthful” account of their investigation.
Judge Jutta Zeilinger in Munich today postponed the trial until Sept. 17 while prosecutors respond to the bid to have the case dismissed. Sharef, 69, is charged over alleged bribes paid to former Argentinian officials who did deals with Siemens units in the 1990s.
“The Munich state prosecutor has at no stage submitted a complete, truthful, consistent account of the procedure,” Heiko Lesch, Sharef’s lawyer, said in an interview following a hearing on what was scheduled to be the first day of trial. “All preliminary proceedings must be submitted in paper form,” he had told the court earlier.
The Siemens corruption scandal that broke in 2006 triggered investigations in at least a dozen countries. Siemens agreed to pay $1.6 billion to settle probes in the U.S. and Germany in 2008.
The alleged violations in today’s case took place while Sharef was on Siemens’s management board. He agreed to pay $275,000 in April to settle a lawsuit brought by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over claims the company paid $27 million in bribes to win contracts for identity cards.
“The defense expects the case to end with an acquittal,” Lesch told Bloomberg by e-mail before the hearing.