Building fraud informer escapes jail
11 February 2005, AMSTERDAM — The man who revealed widespread fraud in the Dutch construction industry escaped a jail term on Friday despite being convicted in Rotterdam Court on bribery charges.
11 February 2005
AMSTERDAM — The man who revealed widespread fraud in the Dutch construction industry escaped a jail term on Friday despite being convicted in Rotterdam Court on bribery charges.
The former director of construction firm Koop Tjuchem, Ad Bos, was found guilty of bribing a public servant with the Department of Public Works and Waterways.
But due to the fact he blew the whistle on industry fraud, the prosecution said on 28 January he should be given a five-month suspended sentence with a two-year probation period.
And the court ruled on Friday that no sentence should be imposed, with the presiding judge pointing to the deeds Bos had performed for society. But the judge also said the bribery charge was "a serious criminal offence".
Bos was found guilty of bribing the public servant with a golf trip, a golf set worth NLG 5,000 and a visit to Yab Yum, an exclusive men's club in Amsterdam, news service NOS reported.
In exchange, building firm Koop Tjuchem was given undue preference in maintenance works on the A10 Amsterdam ring road.
But Bos has denied the allegations and is considering launching an appeal.
He revealed widespread fraud in the construction industry by handing over to Dutch authorities so-called "shadow accounts" in 2001.
Dutch construction companies defrauded the government of millions of euros by illegally entering into price agreements on large-scale infrastructure projects. The profits from the inflated prices were recorded on so-called shadow accounts.
The scandal led to a parliamentary inquiry in 2002 and criminal investigations into the matter still continue.
The Dutch competition watchdog NMa also said last month that it had fined construction companies another EUR 135 million on top of the EUR 100 million in fines previously imposed.
[Copyright Expatica News 2005]
Subject: Dutch news