Ex-couple behind €50,000 donation cooperating with prosecutors, they say
Jana-Helen Juhaste, the person who made a donation of €50,000 to the Center Party, and Martin Künnap, the person from whom the money came, said in a statement to the media on Friday evening that they are cooperating with the Prosecutor's Office in establishing the circumstances surrounding the donation.
According to the statement, with the transfer of this sum for the good of their child, Künnap wanted to at least partially make good on the impacts that his life choices had had on the child and their mother.
Juhaste, meanwhile, decided to donate the money to the Center Party as an expensive snub to the child's father, who never participated in the raising of their child, according to the statement forwarded to the media.
"While this is not the most exciting or intriguing explanation, we would like to assure you that this is the whole truth," Juhaste and Künnap said.
The former couple also said they have nothing to hide in relation to the €50,000.
Acting based on a crime report filed by the Political Parties Financing Surveillance Committee (ERJK), prosecutors in Estonia have launched a criminal investigation to establish the origin of a sum of €50,000 donated to the Center Party and the motives behind said donation.
The investigation was launched to determine whether Juhaste had knowingly made a forbidden donation to the Center Party. According to tentative information, what is known about Juhaste, including her official income, provides grounds to doubt the origin of the money. It is only with a criminal investigation that it can be determined whether Juhaste donated to the Center Party her own or someone else's money, and what the precise origin of the money is, spokespeople for the Prosecutor's Office said.
Chief State Prosecutor Taavi Pern said on Thursday that no one has been declared suspect in the case.
"With this criminal investigation, we will check whether Jana-Helen Juhaste knowingly donated someone else's money to the Center Party," Pern explained. "If the investigation establishes that this was the case, the agency conducting the investigation must also establish whether the party was informed about the real origin of the money and whether there are grounds to suspect the party of a criminal offense — the acceptance of forbidden donation."
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Editor: Aili Vahtla