Home » Austrian former chancellor Kurz sentenced to suspended prison sentence: “Rarely has a false statement been so clear”

Austrian former chancellor Kurz sentenced to suspended prison sentence: “Rarely has a false statement been so clear”

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Sebastian Kurz — © EPA-EFE

Former Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz (37) was sentenced on Friday to a suspended sentence of eight months for making false statements.

The court in Vienna ruled that Kurz had exerted more influence on the appointment of administrators at the government holding company ÖBAG than he had admitted before an investigative committee. Kurz said he knew in advance that his confidante Thomas Schmid would be appointed as CEO, although he stated that he was not involved in the appointment.

The prosecutor dismissed that statement. “Rarely has a false statement been so clear,” it said: Kurz would certainly have influenced the appointment. According to the indictment, he secured a veto and the right to intervene in personnel decisions during his reign.

Kurz described his role as “informed” for tactical reasons, the prosecutor said. He would have wanted to avoid unwanted criticism from politicians and the media. In addition, according to a prosecutor, the former chancellor had an exemplary role as a politician, which he failed to fulfill by making a false statement before a parliamentary investigative committee.

Kurz, who has always denied the allegations, was forced to resign in 2021 after accusations in another case. The former leader of the conservative ÖVP is said to have used taxpayer money to have fictitious opinion polls published. The investigation into that case is still ongoing.

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