A survey on corruption, carried out in Germany against the aircraft manufacturer Airbus around the sale of combat aircraft Eurofighter to Austria, will “soon” be closed, said Friday the prosecutor general’s office of Munich (south) to the AFP. Parallel to the procedures performed in Vienna, France and the United Kingdom, the justice bavarian “survey since 2012” against the French-German group and its investigation “is nearing completion”, according to Hildegard Bäumler-Hösl, magistrate of the general prosecutor’s office.
“We will decide in the wake,” that is, a non-place either of a trial, she said, but “for the time being we have little evidence of corruption”.
Conversely, the magazine Der Spiegel says in an article published Saturday that the prosecutor’s office “preparing indictments”, without quoting sources, nor specify who would be referred to a tribunal. “The affirmation of the Spiegel (…) is not based on any statement or communication on the part of the prosecutors,” responded Airbus with the AFP, refusing to comment on the substance of the a few excerpts from the article, which will only be published Saturday in its entirety.
According to the weekly, investigators bavarian have unearthed the maneuvers “a department parisian” Airbus, most likely the international marketing, to create “shell companies” around its former subsidiary, aircraft maintenance, Vector Aerospace, which was sold in the summer to the american Standard Aero. This timeline would have allowed “to pay bribes to decision-makers based in Austria”, continues Spiegel, for sale controversial of 18 combat aircraft Eurofighter to 2 billion euros in 2003, returned in 2007 to 15 devices to approximately € 1.7 billion.
This contract is already the subject of a judicial investigation in Austria, where the State has filed a complaint in February against Airbus, which he claims between 183.4 million euros and 1.1 billion euros for the fees charged by stealth. The aircraft manufacturer is also covered by the two surveys carried out in France and the United Kingdom on suspicion of corruption in its operations in british civil aviation.