Statement of charges in Savisaar case presented to lawyers
On Tuesday the Office of the Prosecutor General handed statements of charges to the lawyers defending those individuals standing trial in the case in which Tallinn's suspended mayor Edgar Savisaar is the main defendant.
Attorney Aivar Pilv, lawyer for businessman Alexander Kofkin, confirmed to BNS on Tuesday afternoon that the statement of charges had been delivered. He said that with this, the pretrial investigation had come to an end and the Office of the Prosecutor General must now send the charge sheet to the court.
Businessmen Aivar Tuulberg, Alexander Kofkin, Hillar Teder and Vello Kunman are accused of giving a bribe to Savisaar and advertising businessman Paavo Pettai is accused of counterfeiting or falsification and aiding the making of a prohibited donation.
Kalev Kallo, chairman of Tallinn City Council, is accused of aiding the giving and accepting of a bribe and former politician Villu Reiljan of arranging a bribe for Savisaar. The Center Party is to be tried as a legal person in the same case as well.
The embezzlement charge lodged against Savisaar has to do with billboard ads displayed ahead of the municipal elections of 2013. One such television and radio ad, for example, titled "Tallinn Moves" ("Tallinn liigub"), which featured mayor and chairman of the Center Party Edgar Savisaar advocate for physical activity and sports, cost taxpayers more than 50,000 euros. Several people from the Center Pary's top ranks whose photos were displayed as part of the same campaign denied any link to the elections and argued that the purpose of the campaign was to inform people.
Savisaar has been charged with four counts of accepting a bribe, money laundering and acceptance of a prohibited donation for the Center Party on a large scale. The Center Party has been charged as a legal person with accepting a bribe.
According to the charge of money laundering on a large scale, Savisaar hid roughly 192,000 euros in a Swiss bank account, almost 174,000 euros of which he used for the purpose of concealing the illicit origin of the money and its actual owner. The investigation of the episode having to do with money laundering was launched in 2011 before later being merged with the criminal investigation concerning bribe-taking.