Former lawmaker convicted in corruption trial

14th June 2007, Comments 0 comments

14 June 2007, FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) _ A former lawmaker who served on the workers council at automaker Volkswagen AG was convicted and fined Thursday for lying to investigators looking into claims that prostitutes were hired with the company's money in Spain and South Korea.

14 June 2007

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) _ A former lawmaker who served on the workers council at automaker Volkswagen AG was convicted and fined Thursday for lying to investigators looking into claims that prostitutes were hired with the company's money in Spain and South Korea.

Hans-Juergen Uhl, who resigned last month as a member of the Social Democrats, a party that is in the country's governing coalition, had confessed before the trial started earlier this month. He was fined 39,200 euros (US$52,085) for making false statements, the Wolfsburg court ruled.

Uhl was charged in January with being an accessory to breach of trust and with giving false statements in previous civil proceedings against the German media.

Uhl, at the time a senior member of Volkswagen's powerful employee council, was a member of the federal parliament for the center-left Social Democrats. The charges related to his activities on the employee council, not his service in parliament.

Parliament in December lifted Uhl's immunity from prosecution. He had rejected the charges before recanting and acknowledging them. He gave up his seat in the lower house last month.

The investigation revolved around whether VW managers and members of its employee council received illegal privileges, including lavish foreign trips paid for by the company. The probe started after Volkswagen alerted prosecutors to possible wrongdoing.

The employee council has considerable power under German law to approve working conditions and rules and many other aspects of running a business.

AP

Subject: German news

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