Five incriminated in municipal fund fraud case in Gulbene

The Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB) has looked into a case in Gulbene about alleged unlawful spending of municipal funds, KNAB said on May 23.

The KNAB has handed the case over to the Prosecutor's Office.

Evidence has been obtained that an official of the Gulbene municipality and four natural persons approved documentation on construction works that were not actually carried out in the process of rebuilding a former school building. The municipality may have suffered a material loss of more than 16 thousand euros, KNAB said.

Evidence obtained by KNAB shows that the contractor, at the request of an official of the Gulbene municipality, prepared a deed of execution for the reconstruction of the former Bērzi primary school in Gulbene, which included works that had not been carried out. The outstanding works included the insulation of the cladding and the installation of certain structures, including internal doors.

The investigation revealed that the construction manager and two construction supervisors approved the documentation, aware of the consequences. In the final phase of the approval of the documentation, the municipal official signed the forged act of execution. 

As a result of these illegal actions, the municipality paid a total of EUR 16,474,35 for works not actually carried out.  

As a result of the pre-trial investigation, the KNAB requested the Public Prosecutor's Office for Investigation of Offences in the Public Service to initiate criminal proceedings against the public official for inaction and the contractor for fraud. The construction manager and the two construction supervisors for falsification of documents and use of forged documents for greedy purposes. 

These offences are punishable under Articles 319(1), 177(1) and 275(2) of the Criminal Law. 

On May 22, the KNAB concluded the pre-trial investigation by sending the materials of the criminal case to the Public Prosecutor's Office for the Investigation of Criminal Offences in State Institutions.

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