Prosecutor seeks real jail time for three Savisaar corruption co-defendants ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

State Prosecutor
State Prosecutor Source: Photo: Postimees/Scanpix

The prosecutor's office has recommended real jail time to three of the co-defendants in the long-running Edgar Savisaar corruption case, Baltic News Service reports.

Aivar Tuulberg, Kalev Kallo and Alexander Kofkin should serve time, the prosecutor's office believes, while Vello Kunman should receive a suspended sentence (often referred to as a conditional sentence in Estonian law).

Construction magnate Aivar Tuulberg stood accused of bribery, particularly with regard to the Kultuurikatel Creative Hub in Tallinn, in order for his firm, Rand & Tuulberg, to get the tender and thus allegedly knock out a competing company which had earlier bagged the contract.

Kalev Kallo stood accused of facilitating bribery, and lost his parliamentary immunity in May. Kallo is a sitting Centre Party MP.

Charges against businessman Alexander Kofkin include allegations that he paid for medical treatment for Edgar Savisaar, while in Spain.

Businessman Vello Kunman also faced similar charges.

During litigation which started on Monday, the prosecutor sought a one year and six months sentence, with three-months real prison time and three years on probation for Kallo, and the same actual jail time for Kofkin and Tuulberg, with two years' probation.

A conditional sentence of one year, with two years on probation, were sought for Kunman, according to BNS.

Defense lawyers have yet to be heard.

In a multi-faceted case which saw several co-defendants cases hived off from the main case, a variety of penalties were handed out, ranging from fines of €200,000 payable to the state in the case of one co-defendant (businessman Hillar Teder), through to a fine of a similar figure in suspended sentence for the Centre Party, standing as a legal entity (and an actual fine of €25,000), through to the case terminated for reasons of expediency in the case of former Tallinn City Government official Priit Kutser.

Villu Reiljan, former minister of environment was fined €33,000 under the terms of a plea bargain.

Tuulberg, Kofkin, Kallo and Kunman are the remaining defendants yet to be sentenced.

Edgar Savisaar himself saw his trial, which began in summer 2017 and relates to his tenure as Tallinn mayor, wound up due to his health issues at the end of 2018, following a see-saw progression of hearings as the case went up all three levels of the Estonian court system.

At the end of December last year, Savisaar was freed from trial on corruption charges, relating to the giving and taking of bribes, embezzlement, illegal donations and other alleged misdeeds, due to his bad health.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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