The former Prime Minister of Croatia, Ivo Sanader, has been found guilty of war profiteering and sentenced to two and a half years in prison.
Sanader, the former leader of the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) was found guilty of taking a bribe from Hypo Bank from Austria to purchase properties around the world to be used as embassies. At the time Sanader was the deputy Prime Minister and as these offences occurred in the early 1990’s when Croatia was in the middle of the Homeland War he was charged with war profiteering.
The judge in monday’s guilty verdict, pending appeal, also ordered Sanader to return around 500,000 Euros that was paid to him by Hypo Bank as a sweetener to seal the loan deal with the then government.
After the trial Sanader once again claimed that he wasn’t a war profiteer.
In fact, Sanader will be busy in court as he will face more charges of corruption with his role in the MOL case in which he is accused of taking a bribe. It is alleged that Sanader took a bribe from an executive of the Hungarian oil company MOL to facilitate the sale of the state owned INA company. The Constitutional Court quashed the ruling in 2015 and requested a retrial, that retrial is planned to start on Tuesday.