Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Ministry of Foreign Affairs Hinders Investigation of Huge Dutch Corruption Affair

The daily Telegraaf wrote that the investigation of the Justice Department into the corruption accusations against the Dutch building firm Ballast-Nedam concerning work in Saudi Arabia is hindered by the Foreign Affairs department. The essence of the corruption affair is the payment of hundreds of millions of Euros of bribes to Arab officials in exchange for building contracts. The building firm was allegedly helped by the major auditing firm KPMG. According to the Telegraaf, Ballast-Nedam paid bribes of about $500 million via Swiss number accounts to Saudi Arabian officials at the highest level between 1996 and 2003. In 2012, Ballast-Nedam paid $17.5 million to avoid being prosecuted in the Netherlands. Yet, the prosecution of individuals, including former board members, continues. Minister Frans Timmermans (Labor Party) of Foreign Affairs said that he knows nothing about the issue. www.telegraaf.nl/site_error/404.html?url=/dft/bedrijven/ballast_nedam/article22123699.ece

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