Tartu County Court convicts Allain Karuse of vote buying

Allain Karuse and Ester Karuse.
Allain Karuse and Ester Karuse. Source: SCANPIX/POSTIMEES/ Tairo Lutter

Tartu County Court has convicted Allain Karuse of offenses against freedom of election at the 2021 local elections and illegal handling of liquid fuels for which an aggregate punishment of €12,450 was ordered.

According to the charges, Allain Karuse swayed ten persons to vote for either himself or Ester Karuse at the 2021 local government council elections in the city of Valga.

In exchange, he promised two persons free diesel fuel, 10 liters in one case and 15 in the other. One person was offered at least €20 in cash for voting for Allain or Ester Karuse.

Allain Karuse also swayed people to vote for himself or E. Karuse by handing €70 to a person who used it to buy meals for themselves and six other persons in a Valga restaurant. Allain Karuse committed criminal acts in promising and handing over assets in exchange for people voting a certain way.

Allain Karuse and his company A. Karuse AS were also charged with illegal trading of large quantities of motor fuel. The charges concerned illicit trading of 45,784.69 liters of diesel fuel worth €44,064.06 between September 1 and December 13, 2021.

The fuel was sold in 645 transactions, which carried the same intent and can, therefore, be treated as a continued offense. Because the company has paid for the diesel beforehand, the entire sum cannot be treated as illegal income. Allain Karuse and A. Karise AS committed a crime in illegally trading large quantities of motor fuel.

Tartu County Court handed Allain Karuse a pecuniary punishment of €12,450. A. Karuse AS will have to pay €11,016.15 as the value of assets subject to confiscation. The company was handed a conditional pecuniary punishment in the sum of €20,000, which it does not have to pay provided the company does not commit a new offense during the probationary period.

Allain Karuse and A. Karuse AS need to pay €1,087.50 in compensation levies accompanying a conviction.

The case was handled in agreement process. The decision has not entered into force and can be appealed inside 15 days.

Allain Kruse was a member of the Center Party between February 12, 2018, and December 30, 2021.


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Editor: Marcus Turovski

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