Center politician acquitted of false statement charges

Eha Võrk.
Eha Võrk. Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

Harju County Court acquitted Center Party politician and former Tallinn deputy mayor Eha Võrk on Thursday of all charges related to providing false statements to the Police and Border Guard Board (PPA), reports daily Eesti Ekspress.

"There is no evidence that would confirm Eha Võrk has given false statements," said Judge Anna Rebane, according to a report by Eesti Ekspress. The court also ruled, that Võrk must be compensated €9,820 to cover legal costs.

According to Eesti Ekspress, the case against Võrk, which began this spring, began to turn in the Center politician's favor in the very first hour, when defense lawyer Oliver Määs convinced the court to disregard the main piece of evidence against her, an intercepted phone conversation with fellow Center Party member Marina Riisalu.

According to the report, the phone call in question, took place on May 31, 2020, and was intercepted in the process of another criminal investigation, the Porto Franco real estate case involving businessman Hillar Teder.

However, in cases of providing false testimony, intercepted phone calls may not be used in evidence. Võrk had stood accused of five counts of providing false statements to the Police and Border Guard Board (PPA).

Lead Prosecutor Taavi Pern had suggested to Judge Rebane, that the transcript of the intercepted conversation could be considered as "other documentary evidence," admitting that without it, it would not be possible to convict Võrk. After a period of reflection, Rebane ruled that the evidence was not admissible in court.

As he left court on Thursday, Pern told Eesti Ekspress that he would definitely challenge the decision in the Tallinn District Court.


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Editor: Michael Cole

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