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First verdict in EPPO case in Slovenia: Three found guilty of attempted fraud

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At the beginning of this month (4 July 2022), Maribor Local Court (Okrajno sodišče v Mariboru) issued a verdict with a punitive order, regarding the first indictment of a European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) case in Slovenia. All three accused – two natural persons and one legal entity – were found guilty of attempted fraud to the detriment of the EU budget.

The first defendant, the director of a company, and the second defendant, the director of another company, acted in complicity and submitted false statements and documents to a public tender from the Slovenian Ministry of Infrastructure, to co-finance the purchase and installation of devices for producing electrical energy. This project was funded by the EU Cohesion Fund.

With this action, the two defendants tried to mislead the ministry in order to obtain €31 300 worth of non-reimbursable grant money for the company under the directorship of the first defendant. However, the ministry discovered the attempted fraud in time, and did not pay out the grant.

The verdict contains a suspended sentence, in which each of the two accused natural persons is sentenced to 7 months of imprisonment, with a probationary period of two years, and in which the accused company is sentenced to pay a fine of €10 000, with a probationary period of two years.

Currently, the verdict is not yet final.